Ex­pe­ri­enced pair just keep on walk­ing

South Waikato News - - Your Paper, Your Place - LUKE KIRKEBY

Jan Bul­lot and Kerry Far­rant swear they are not com­pet­i­tive but when it comes to de­fend­ing their Ox­fam Trail­walker record that all changes.

De­spite an­nounc­ing their re­tire­ment two years ago, the South Waikato friends, along with Auck­land based Lesley Reece and Mar­garet Kennedy, are set to take part in their 12th Ox­fam Trail­walker as the City Girls from March 25 to 26 in Whakatane.

The walk sees teams of four tackle ei­ther a 100km or 50km course to raise funds for Ox­fam’s work to fight poverty mainly in the Pa­cific.

The ladies have com­pleted ten, 100km cour­ses to date and one 50km course which was in­tro­duced last year, when the event moved from Taupo to Whakatane. This year they will tackle their sec­ond 50km.

Bul­lot and Far­rant said they are the only group to have done it non-stop from the be­gin­ning.

‘‘We hit ten and we were re­tir­ing,’’ Far­rant said. ‘‘To­tally, I think we had all kind of ac­cepted that,’’ Bul­lot added.

‘‘The four of us said we would still like to get to­gether and do some­thing one week­end though and we were go­ing to go back and sup­port Ox­fam do­ing a check­point or as vol­un­teers but af­ter our tenth they changed the venue from Taupo to Whakatane. We sort of looked at each other and thought ‘‘oh a new course, how cool would that be?’’ Bul­lot said.

‘‘We were nearly tempted to put our hands up for one more 100km just to do the new course and then they said they had added a 50km so we were in. We say we are not com­pet­i­tive but I guess we are be­cause we don’t want any­one to beat our record.’’

The ladies are cur­rently train­ing three times a week.

‘‘Last year we found we had to pull back which was a men­tal thing but now we are quite into the re­laxed mode of just do­ing 50km,’’ Far­rant said.

‘‘Pretty much any­one could do it, even the 100km, you just have to put time in on your feet be­cause they can get very sore,’’ she said.

She said there are now no longer plans to re­tire any­time soon.

‘‘Some­thing will hap­pen I sup­pose, and some­one won’t be able to do it any­more,’’ she said.

‘‘But be­ing ‘‘non-com­pet­i­tive’’ we don’t want to be the one who stops,’’ Bul­lot laughed.

To do­nate visit ox­fam­trail­walker.org.nz and search for City Girls un­der teams.

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