Chris Simmance

Koozai Rise To The Great South Run Challenge – The Results

29th Oct 2012 News, Events, News, Koozai News, News 6 minutes to read

So yesterday saw members of the Koozai team take on the Bupa Great South Run to support some great causes. It was cold and wet at times, but we conquered the adversities like any elite athletes would and in this Blog post we will give you the run down of the results and let you know how much we raised for our chosen charities.

The Charities

The support from our friends, families and colleagues was incredible and as a team we raised a total of £1,770.00 across all our chosen charities, which is a fantastic result. All this money will go to these great causes and hopefully improve the lives of those people in need of it.

For the members of the team supporting The Kids Cancer Charity we raised a total of £1,060, which is an amazing amount for a really worthwhile charity that aims to improve the quality of life for children with Cancer and offers much needed support to families and individuals affected by a child with Cancer. To find out more about the Kids Cancer Charity or to donate, click here.

For Keech Hospice Care Andrew Curtis raised a total of £460 which is a great achievement and a fantastic sum for his chosen charity. The Keech Hospice Care charity aims to give patients the highest quality of life while providing vital support for their family and friends throughout their loved one’s illness and in their bereavement. You can still donate to Andrew’s JustGiving page here.

Graeme made a sterling effort by raising £241 for The Encephalitis Society. Having a very personal connection to this charity, Graeme put in countless hours of time to train and raise money. The charity aims to improve the quality of life of all people affected directly & indirectly by Encephalitis and you can still donate to this charity by visiting their JustGiving page here.

The Day

The effort put in by all the runners on the day was incredible and the level of support given by the countless thousands who lined the streets cheering strangers on was inspiring. Children holding their arms out for high fives from all the runners and seeing all the great charities that were being supported by the 25,000 runners made the 10 mile course an inspiring and at the same time humbling experience. Spurring us on when we were feeling the pain and keeping us on pace for the great times we all achieved.

Pre-race nerves and the cold weather got us all re-thinking our time estimates that we had so boldly made public on the previous Blog post. There was a little bit of warm up banter before we all wished each other luck and headed to our starting areas.

Slightly awkward and potentially risky group warm ups lead us up to the final moments before the start line where we were met with cheers from the crowd and inspirational music from the operatic singer Sean Ruane to get us all geared up for the next hour+ of our lives. -Much appreciated crowd cheering and opera singing!

The Final Results

Its fair to say that at Koozai we aren’t just competitive in our industry, we are also extremely competitive in the office too! With a mix of first time runners, marathon runners and an Ironman it was clear that the competition was going to be tough.

Koozai Finishing Times

There were some personal bests on the day and some amazing results from the first time runners with everyone beating at least 10,000 of the other runners!

Race heat map

A few words from some of the Koozai Athletes on what got them through

Andrew Curtis “Failure not an option. The thought of all those Jelly Beans at the end of the race.  The atmosphere was brilliant and to run with so many other runners that all want to do their best just made you want to keep going.”


Andy Williams“I wanted 4th spot badly so getting as close to Robs, Andy C’s and Hannah’s time as possible and going fast enough to beat everyone else. I was also fighting a personal battle and I was hell bent on not letting it beat me – I won”


James Perrin “I managed to get through it thanks to great support from the side lines and from fellow runners. Every time I stopped to walk, someone would run past, grab me, and get me running again. In the end, that’s what helped the most, because after 7 miles I was more than happy to walk the remainder. I’m glad I didn’t and I’m glad I got the time I did.”


Graeme Benge “What kept me going was the thought of a big plate of bangers and mash, a cuddle/snooze with my daughter on the sofa and the two bottles of Pedigree Ale that have been mocking me for even contemplating the run….”


Tom Howlett “I managed to keep a good pace throughout, better than I thought I would be able to. The atmosphere on the day was great and the spectators definitely helped spur me on. On top of that there was music every now and then which distracted from the pain, there was the added element of trying to keep up with other runners that also helped improve the pace overall”


Oliver Ewbank “Crossing the line was my main motivation. When I thought I had nothing left in the tank Jelly Babies and LMFAO on the loud speaker kept me pumped! What a buzz!”


Hannah Norman“It wasn’t the easiest of runs but I kept looking around at all the fantastic people supporting the runners and seeing all the different charities people were running for – true inspiration! Very humbling to see so many people of all ages supporting worthy charities. This gave me the focus to dig deep and run my socks off!”


Chris Simmance (Running as Ben Norman) – “Seeing all the people lining the streets cheering you on and the inspiring words on peoples race numbers saying who they were running for helped me. I loved all the kids lining the streets wanting a high five! After the Olympics it pushed me to keep going. Plus I made sure to do the Mo Farrah ‘M’ at the finishing line!”


Rob Arkell“I had to push hard to beat my colleague in the Sales Team, Andrew Curtis, who’s been posting some impressive training times! It wouldn’t have been worth coming into the office if he beat me! Plus I want to run faster to one day get to Kailua Kona, Hawaii, for the Ironman World Championships!”

Overall the whole team took inspiration from the crowds and the atmosphere created by them and all the other runners. The personal messages on their backs saying who or what they were running for really helped to keep us going and added a humbled perspective on the whole event.

What we took away from the run

The whole event really left us with the impression that no matter how bad things are made to look in the news, there are some amazing people out there who are prepared to train hard for a long distance run and people who are willing to stand in the rain and wind to cheer them on.

Our competitive nature and personal needs to fight our aches and pains got us in sight of the finish line with just enough energy for a final push. The thought of fistfuls of Jelly Babies and a pint of ale at the end also helped a few of us pass the finishing line!

We are all aching today (some a little more than others) but have a great sense of achievement and pride at what we did for some great causes.

Thank you all for your support and watch this space for next years run as some of us are clearly a little delirious and already signing up!

All the best pics

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