Chichester couple’s Ironman challenge raises over £5,000 for children’s hospice

A couple from Chichester set up their own Ironman challenge and raised more than £5,000 for an Arundel children’s hospice.

Tuesday, 10th November 2020, 11:37 am

Fred and Georgie Coppin had signed up to take part in one of Ironman’s ultra-distance triathlons in Spain this year, but the event was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Georgie said: “Despite being a golden opportunity to duck out, we didn’t want our training to go to waste.

“And with the pun-ability of the event, Chironman, we thought – could we host our own?”

The Chironman challenge saw the challengers take on a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bicycle ride, and a 26.2-mile run to raise money for Chestnut Tree House children's hospice

Fred and Georgie were joined by Jack Herniman and Vicky Edwards for the challenge, which saw them take on a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bicycle ride, and a 26.2-mile run in 12 and a half hours.

The pair had planned for participants to do the swim in open water, but a week before Chironman the water temperature significantly dropped.

Fred said: “The temperature lowered to below 12 degrees, which is well below usual triathlon regulations and could have been dangerous.”

After many phone calls and a last-minute panic, the participants were able to start the event at Westgate Leisure Centre on October 17.

Fred said: “It felt like a very luxurious start to the event. We were prepared for savagely cold lake water and the next thing you know we ended up in a warm, clean swimming pool!

“I’d like to say a big thank you to Westgate Leisure centre for helping make this event a success.”

The foursome was also joined by 50 other participants for various parts on the Chironman course.

Fred said: “Training for a triathlon like this takes months, even years.

“So, we opened up areas of the course for other people to take part, without them needing to take on the full challenge.

“The response was overwhelming – from first-time cyclists to people pushing for their marathon personal best, so many people got involved.

“We’d like to say thank you to everyone who took part, and also to those who made the event a success, such as New Square Property, a local family development company that kindly sponsored Chironman.”

Fred and Georgie are long-term supporters of Chestnut Tree House and put the charity at the core of their fundraising initiative.

Fred said: “It’s a real privilege to support our local children’s hospice.

“They are wonderful and offered us so much support along the way.”

To donate to Fred and Georgie’s Chironman fundraiser for Chestnut Tree House, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/chironman

Visit www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk for more information about organising a fundraising event.

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