There will be no prouder father at this year’s Great North Run than Derek Rye. For the Ingleby Barwick businessman will be joined on the starting line by his three sons, Craig, Nik and Adam.
Derek, 56, is making an athletic comeback at the world’s biggest half-marathon on September 11 a full 10 years after last running any kind of race.
His running return comes after he challenged his three sons to join him in taking part in the Great North Run during the family’s Christmas festivities – though he has not stepped up his own training until the last few weeks.
Now brother Craig, 32, Nik, 28, and 21-year-old Adam will join their dad on the starting line as they bid to raise funds for charitable movement, Middlesbrough and Teesside Philanthropic Foundation.
While Derek has previously taken part in the Great North Run and both the London and Nottingham marathons, it will be a big race debut for his three sons.
Eldest son Craig, who is a director at Stockton logistics firm InBond, patrons of the Philanthropic Foundation, said: “This was all my Dad’s brainchild. He lay down the gauntlet and challenged us to take part.
“Although the plan is to stick together for the run itself, there’s definitely some friendly rivalry going on in training now, as Dad is very competitive. He used to be a dedicated runner when he was in his 30s but he hasn’t run more than two miles over the last 10 years, so it will be a challenge for him.
“I think it’s only since he got back in training that he’s realised how far 13 miles is!
“But the most important thing is that we’re doing this for a really good cause. The Philanthropic Foundation is something that’s close to our hearts because of the brilliant work it does raising funds for the Teessiders who need it most. As local lads, all born in Middlesbrough, we’re proud to be running for Teesside – and especially proud to be running as a family.”
- If you’d like to join the Rye runners, the Philanthropic Foundation has a few guaranteed places remaining for the Great North Run. For more details contact firstname.lastname@example.org