Former sprint and hurdling athlete Colin Jackson CBE talks to Wales Express about his charity project Go Dad Run.
What is Go Dad Run?
The Sanlam Go Dad Run is a series of 5K’s for men and boys taking place in six locations in June to raise awareness of and funds for Prostate Cancer UK. I created it in 2013 after two of my uncles developed prostate cancer. One of them discussed it and sought early treatment and as a result he survived but my other uncle is sadly no longer with us. I was inspired by the astonishing success of Race For Life and decided to come up with something that would bring together dads, sons, uncles, cousins, brothers, grandads, friends, teammates and neighbours so that they can run, jog or walk around the courses and share the experience !
Where is the nearest run for Wales Express viewers/readers?
Our very first event this year will be in Llangefni on Anglesey and I’ll be there on the morning of Sunday, June 7, to set the runners off and also encourage the younger children in their Bee Y’z 1K fun run! The Cardiff 5K is in Bute Park on Father’s Day, June 21, and we have a new one in Warrington’s Victoria Park on Sunday, June 14. Our other events this year are in Bristol, London and Worcester.
What are your ambitions for Go Dad Run?
We started with a pilot run in Llangefni in 2013, staged three events last year and have doubled that number for this June so we’d love to continue to expand until there are hundreds of community events all around Britain . The shocking facts are that one in eight men in the UK will develop the disease and it kills more than 10,000 each year. Awareness and getting guys thinking about their health is so important if we are to prevent families from going through the heartache of losing their loved ones to prostate cancer.
How do you keep fit now that you have retired?
I don’t really have a specific fitness programme now but because I have a busy workload I feel better and more productive when I feel fit. I do keep very active and I do a lot of skiing and snowboarding and I have some training companions, including Jamie Baulch and Cheryl Hicks, who are also the organisers of the Sanlam Go Dad Run in Cardiff on June 21, as I need to be pushed when I am in the gym or on the bike !
How do you relax when not working?
When I actually have an evening at home I love cooking and can do anything from basic soup through stir fry to a full roast. Cooking is the one creative thing that I’m quite good at and I loved appearing on Celebrity Masterchef because I enjoy creating a dish in the kitchen with whatever is there. However, some of the Victorian style ingredients we were presented with in the recent BBC One series 24 Hours in the Past presented a bit of a challenge to come up with something that was actually edible for the team !
You will be a part of the BBC team who are covering the World Athletics Championships in August when they are staged in China. Which Welsh names should we be looking out for?
Well the qualifying doesn’t take place until July but assuming they stay fit and in form I’d hope that Seren Buddy-Davies will make an impact in the women’s 400m and Brett Morse should be selected for men’s discus and, of course, we all wish Dai Greene well in his pursuit of a second world title in the 400m Hurdles.
The Sanlam Go Dad Run 5K in Llangefni, Anglesey takes place on Sunday June 7t, outside the Town Hall. All runners will receive a pair of Sanlam Blue Y’fronts, a PUMA T-shirt, Big Yellow Goodie Bag and a medal and the first three will also win a Timex Ironman watch. Entry fees are £10 for 11-17 year olds and £15 for 18+. The official charity partner are Prostate Cancer UK. Full details on how to enter can be found at www.godadrun.co.uk and you can follow it on Facebook and Twitter.