Two of British Athletics’ greatest 400-metre specialists joined forces and reignited their relay running skills to raise funds for the Lloyd Cowan Bursary, which supports unfunded young athletes and coaches.
Olympic and double World Champion Christine Ohuruogu and World and European Indoor Champion Perri Shakes-Drayton lined up with Love Island winner Amber-Rose Gill and former athlete Yannick Phippen to take on the New Balance Big Relay. Each team member had to run a five-kilometre relay leg, with Perri Shakes-Drayton leading the way.
“When I was asked to run for the Lloyd Cowan Bursary, I didn’t hesitate. Lloyd was a great guy and coach. It was always a pleasure to be around his warm and caring personality,” said Perri. “At times, he headed the relay team that I was on with Christine, and I know he would have been as proud of us today as he was at the World Indoor Championships in 2012 when we held off the USA favourites to win gold.
“If I can use my talent and love of running to help inspire the next young athlete, then that’s my job done! The bursary is great. Young athletes and coaches need the support to do well.”
Yannick Phippen, was on leg two. The former sprinter relished taking part. “It was an absolute honour to run for the Lloyd Cowan Bursary alongside two legends of the sport and a special guest. It’s an amazing cause set up in memory of an incredible man.”
Amber-Rose Gill was ill on the morning of the event but bravely showed up and battled through the third leg. She passed the baton to Lloyd Cowan Bursary Ambassador and Trustee Christine Ohuruogu, whom Lloyd coached throughout her athletics career.
“I couldn’t have felt prouder running around South London, Lloyd’s former stomping ground, with his name on my top. Before I started, I took a picture of my vest, which was a surreal but special feeling. I ran because Lloyd made me run like this every Boxing Day, and I thought of him each hot, sweaty step!”
The team at Lloyd Cowan Bursary thank Perri, Yannick, Amber and Christine for their fabulous fundraising efforts.