Edinburgh pair run 12 cross-country marathons raising £30,000 for cancer charities

A pair of runners have taken on an epic 314 mile run to raise cash for charities supporting cancer patients.
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Toby Gray, 18 and Charlie Brett, 22, who describe themselves as “the Tartaneers,” are attempting to raise £30,000 for cancer charities Make2ndsCount and Marie Curie through an incredible endurance challenge.

Toby and Charlie have planned a 12-marathon route from Sutherland to Edinburgh taking in Inverness, Aviemore, and Perth.

Best friends Toby Gray, 18 and Charlie Brett, 22, on route to the Capital.Best friends Toby Gray, 18 and Charlie Brett, 22, on route to the Capital.
Best friends Toby Gray, 18 and Charlie Brett, 22, on route to the Capital.
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The pair are now only four marathons away from arriving home in the Capital on June 25.

“This challenge is incredibly tough, but we are within the closing stages now,” said Toby, who, as the 1XV Hooker for Merchiston Castle School.

“It’s in memory of all our loved ones who have been taken by cancer and for families everywhere whose lives have been impacted by cancer,”

The duo are not new to challenging fundraising efforts, in June last year, they completed a demanding 24-hour challenge comprising a 2km row, 3km run, and 10km cycle (360km - 223 miles) - every hour on the hour - raising an astounding £24,000 for Cancer Research.

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“We’ve discovered a new-found passion to push ourselves beyond the limits for a cause bigger than ourselves.” explained Charlie, who is currently in his last year at Edinburgh College, having played touch rugby internationally and rugby union to a high standard.

“Neither of us had even run a half marathon before we did this, let alone a full one. As rugby players we are using completely different muscles.”

“We have a mindset of pushing ourselves and never settling,” added Toby, who is studying for his A Levels.

“We’re both drawing strength from the lessons we learned on the rugby pitch. We felt we could either sit around and do nothing during the lockdown last year, or get involved in something we could be proud of. We were delighted with what we managed to raise last year for Cancer Research, so this current challenge is taking it all a step further.”

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The pair are receiving practical and emotional support throughout the challenge by a core team of eight family members and helpers who are following them in vehicles, and on bikes.

Videographer friend Jack Nicholls, also from Edinburgh, is filming the whole challenge to share on social media channels.

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