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The State Street Caledonian Challenge

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Are You Tough Enough?

Press release

Competitors are being urged to register now if they think they have what it takes to complete one of the UK's most grueling charity endurance races.

Online registration (www.caledonianchallenge.com) for the State Street Caledonian Challenge, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2006, is now open with record number of walkers already signed up. Teams of between three and six, each representing companies from across the UK, will walk 54 miles non-stop along Scotland's toughest and most spectacular terrain from Fort William to Ardlui within 24 hours.

The 2006 event will take place over the weekend of the 17/18 June and the organisers are expecting to exceed last year's record entry of 1403 walkers to over 1500 entrants. However, not all competitors are tough enough to complete the race with only 75% finishing the course last year as participants faced some of the summers most challenging weather, ranging from stifling heat to thunder and lightning storms not to mention Scotland infamous midges - not be underestimated.

Last year, over 70% of the teams were from England, so this year more Scots are being urged to prove they have what it takes as all the monies raised goes to grass roots Scottish charities through the Scottish Community Foundation. Each team is challenged to raise a minimum of £500 sponsorship per walker for charity and over 20 trophies are awarded from the Top Fundraising Team to the Fastest Male and All Female team and to corporate categories such as the Fastest Financial Services and Fastest Legal Services teams.

In 2005, the walkers raised over £1 million last year to support the work of the Scottish Community Foundation, which supports local charities and community groups right across Scotland through the creation of a permanent endowment for Scotland and the making of targeted grant awards. This will bring the total amount raised by the State Street Caledonian Challenge, since it started in 1997, to over £5 million. Over 600 grants have been awarded to Scottish charities and community organisations thanks to this money.

The Caledonian Challenge Events Director, Sally-Anne Hunter, said: “ The challenge always demands both a high level of fitness and strength of mind and every participant should be commended for their endurance, determination and sense of team spirit – such qualities are enabling us to support even more community projects across Scotland.”
During the 24-hour period, walkers and runners set off from the Forestry Track in Fort William, heading through Glen Coe via the 'Devil's staircase' to cross the remote Rannoch Moor and onwards to Loch Lomond.

Jane Macnaughton, member of the Loch Leven Pacemakers who won the 2005 Team Spirit award said: “It was an amazing experience for all of us to embark on such a challenge. There were so many people involved and we truly bonded during the preparation stages. I personally got to speak to colleagues, who before I did not really interact with, due to our differing jobs in the organisation. I would definitely recommend this to any other company. Knowing we were helping local charities made it all that more meaningful.”

Mark Elliott, one of the members of the team from Deloitte and the 2005 Fastest Accountancy Team said: “We all did quite a lot of training individually for the challenge by walking and running. After the first 3 stages though, we began to find it really hard, particularly when we were walking in torrential rain in the dark. But we’re used to working together as a team so we just stuck together and spurred each other on - we all agreed there was no way we would have finished it otherwise.”
Sue Galloway, one of the members of the 2005 Fastest All Women’s Team said: “We had such a great team as we are all so well-matched and just stuck together all the way round. We kept each other’s spirits up with lots of good chat, sing-songs and games to help the time go by and to forget our tired legs. Nobody whinged at all during the trek and our support team, who met us at the stops with food, drink and moral support, were also fantastic.
Ends
Further information: Sue McKichan.
Online registration for The State Street Caledonian Challenge on the 17th of June 2006 is now open. Check out our website: www.caledonianchallenge.com


January 17, 2006, 4:35 pm


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