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When the going gets tough, the tough get going . . . and three friends will be proving they’ve got what it takes to compete in this weekend’s Sundowner Iron Man challenge – and help disabled and terminally ill children at the same time.


Leeds-based charity worker Neil Preston will be joined by Tom Sharp and Eoghan Given to raise money for Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children.


Neil, from Horsforth in Leeds, is a keen amateur triathlete but, he says: “I have never attempted anything quite like this before.”


Neil is Head of Trusts and Partnerships for Newlife, which is the UK’s largest charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness. Newlife has helped 1,391 children in Yorkshire alone, investing more than £1,300,000 into equipment to change lives and support young people to achieve their potential.


On Saturday 16 September, the trio – who all belong to Leeds Bradford Triathlon Club – will be taking on a 1,900 metre open water swim, 90 kilometre bike ride and 21.2 kilometre road run through the Yorkshire countryside around Allerthorpe Lakeland Park, where the event begins and ends.


All three have been putting in hours of training and on a recent cycle trip Neil met two-time Olympic triathlon gold medallist Alistair Brownlee. Neil said: “We chatted for a while and I told him about Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children. He was very interested in how the organisation supports families, often in dire need, in Yorkshire and across the whole of the UK. He gave me a few tips and words of encouragement, which was quite inspirational.”


If you would like to support Neil, Tom and Eoghan – and help disabled and terminally ill children – go to: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sundownerneil. Neil said: “Our target is £1,500 – and every penny counts, with so many children in urgent need right now.”


To find out how Newlife is helping children in your area of Yorkshire go to www.newlifecharity.co.uk/local and click on the County Map.


Neil said: “Newlife really wants to help change children’s lives – but the charity can’t do that alone. Newlife would love to hear from anyone who is taking on a sporting challenge and would like to support local disabled children and get involved through fundraising.”


For further information go to the website or contact Suzie or a member of the Newlife team on 01543 462777 or email local@newlifecharity.co.uk.


Pictured, from left: Tom Sharp, Eoghan Given and Neil Preston.

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