London Marathon preview: Part I

London Marathon preview: Part I

Kisharon Marathon Runners 13074
Kisharon runners Shimon Lev, Aviva Braunold, Michael Jaeger and Brian Gordon

With the London Marathon just ten days away, the community’s athletes are raring to go as they get set to raise thousands of pounds for Jewish charities and organsations.

In the first of two previews, we look at some of those who will be competing in the 26-mile race.

Special needs charity Kisharon has six runners taking part – the star turn being Aviva Braunold, its adult day services manager, who wants to raise “as much cash as possible.” She says: “I walked the marathon for Kisharon in 2006 and finished in 6:56. I’d like to do it quicker, but I’ll be happy just to finish. ” Sponsor her at: http//

Diamond merchant Matt Bicks, 33, will be running his second London Marathon, his first for Kisharon, whom he describes as being a “fantastic and phenomenal charity.” The chair of Borehamwood Ner Yisrael shul, he hopes to beat last year’s time of 5:18. Sponsor him at: http//

The youngest team member is 26-year-old jeweller Joshua Green. He says: “This is my first marathon but I like to keep fit and to do charity work so I’m looking forward to the challenge.” Sponsor him at: http//

Patent attorney Michael Jaeger, 40, is another first-time runner who was inspired by his friend Shimon Lev who ran for Kisharon last year. He says: “He twisted my arm and now we are both running”. Sponsor him at: http//

Shimon Lev, 40, a programme manager for Thomson Reuters, hopes to beat his previous time of 4:35. He says: “I enjoyed last year and got the marathon bug. I have a family member who is supported by the charity so it made sense to choose Kisharon again.” Sponsor him at: http//

The half-dozen is completed by IT project manager Brian Gordon, 42, a veteran of three London marathons. He signed up for Kisharon  before his wife Nicole began working for the charity. He’s looking to finish within four hours. Sponsor him at: http//

Kisharon’s fundraising and communications director Richard Franklin said: “I truly admire our runners for their time, dedication and commitment to Kisharon and the people we support.”

Jewish Care has five runners, starting with Max Sugarman. The 21-year-old has worked for the charity in the Holocaust Survivor’s Centre, and says: “I’ve decided that 2014 will be the year that I finally get off the couch and run the London Marathon as a personal challenge and for a worthy cause. I’ve decided to run for Jewish Care as it’s a great charity that helps people of all ages, running day care centres, care homes, community centres and providing support to those that need it. Sponsor him at: http//

Jewish Care’s Adam Shelley, Emma Goldstein and Max Sugarman

Running the race has been a dream for Adam Shelley. “Just over five years ago, my father passed away shortly after being diagnosed with liver cancer,” he says. “There’s not a day that goes by when he is not in my mind. We watched our beloved Liverpool together when I was in Istanbul in 2005 for the Champions League Final, he texted me at half-time saying not to give up. It went on to be one of the most memorable moments of my life. I will take this advice, belief and mentality into the Marathon training and the event itself. With the support of my special family and friends. I hope to complete the challenge. My dad valued Jewish Care very highly as do I and I’m delighted to be raising money for such a fantastic cause.” Sponsor him at: http//

Emma Goldstein has finally decided to take the plunge, saying it’s “quite frankly terrifying. I don’t actually think I ever realised how far 26.2 miles was when I signed up. I’ve always just said, without too much thought, that I was one day going to run the marathon. Well, that time has come and I am actually doing it!

“I’ve decided to run for Jewish Care, which is an extremely worthy charity that aims to make a positive impact on the lives of Jewish people, and to look over the most vulnerable members of the community.“

Alex Pollack ran the marathon for Jewish Care two years ago. The 36-year-old says: “I’ve always been a keen runner and like to give myself a new challenge every year so this year it’s running the marathon which I’m aiming to do in less than 4.5 hours.

“The areas of society that Jewish Care supports are also very close to me, especially where you are supporting survivors of WW2. It’s a wonderful charity.”

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