“100% or nothing!” was the encouragement 17 year old Daniel Clarke yelled to his PE Teacher as they neared the base of ‘Newport Hill’ notorious for knocking out many competitors in the previous years Pub2Pub Fun Run this morning.
In just 24 hours after registering on Friday Daniel had raised $1,400 towards The Orangutan Project’s Safeguard Program to help save the critically endangered orangutan.
As they crossed the finish line, of the 13km run in just 59 minutes, Leigh Elsmore, Daniel’s PE Teacher from Northern Beaches Christian School, the person responsible for inspiring Daniel to take part in the run, couldn’t believe the amount of people who yelled out messages of encouragement along the way after the duo appeared in the local newspaper the day before (See article).
“We were running all the way, Mr Elsmore never stopped and just kept pushing up steep hills, over gutters and around other runners”, Daniel said. “It was so much fun!”.
As they were coming up Newport Hill Leigh said to Daniel, “Just think, every step we are taking is giving one little orangutan a life!”.
You could see the smile on Daniel’s face grow wider as they approached the finish line in the car park of the Newport Arms Hotel on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. The announcer was yelling over the microphone, “…and here is the person we have been waiting for, put your hands together for young Daniel Clarke who, with his brother, is saving the orangutans from extinction”, and the applause went up from the 2,000 strong crowd.
When asked at the finish line, what was it like for you?, Daniel replied, “I had never had this experience before, it was amazing, I was going so fast, the wind was rushing by me, it is hard to explain. It was as if I felt a sense of peace, as if I had nothing to worry about at all”.
The race was well organised and even though there were around 5,000 people in today’s fun run it turned out to be a beautiful day (just perfect for a run!).
You can donate up until the 30th September, 2013.
Photos by William Clarke