The RUNNERS donned their best party costumes for a team race to benefit a Darlington charity.
Fifty teams, totaling 150 runners, gathered at the start of the 15th McTaggart Trot, which has raised thousands of pounds for the Hospice Sainte-Thérèse over the years.
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Hosted by Darlington Triathlon Club member Grant McTaggart, with help from Darlington Harrier Paul Cook and an army of helpers, the event took competitors on a loop from Barton, near Richmond, to Stapleton, Croft and Middleton Tyas.
Team members completed either a 3.5 mile stage or a 7.5 mile section, with the last runner making the full circular return to Barton Village Hall, a distance of 11 miles. A 1AB Taxis minibus driver transported the riders from the drop-off points.
Grant started the charity run after a club member’s wife fell ill and was cared for by staff at St Teresa’s Hospice.
“This remains a great cause and an incredible facility for the people of Darlington, South Durham and North Yorkshire,” he said.
“When we started we only had nine teams and 27 riders and since then it has grown steadily. Despite the Covid, we still managed to attract 150 participants this year. Many competitors say it’s their favorite race of the year because runners of different skill levels participate, it’s run in such a good spirit and it feels like the start of Christmas.
“It’s such a good event and luckily it went off without a hitch. Everyone brought a lot of cake for the end of the race which they enjoyed.
St Teresa needs to raise £ 3million a year to provide free, hospital and community care to people with life-limiting illnesses and their families in Darlington, South Durham and North Yorkshire.
St Teresa’s Hospice General Manager Jane Bradshaw said: “In the current climate we are absolutely delighted that a fundraising event can take place and the continued support from Grant and his team is wonderful.
“The pandemic is far from over and funding continues to be of concern to us, particularly if the Covid restrictions come back into effect. We have managed to maintain our basic services throughout the pandemic, so we are very grateful for the help of our community. ”
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