Laidlaw reaches half-way point in epic challenge
16 July 2021
Scottish Rugby Academy coach, Chris Laidlaw completed his sixth charity marathon taking him to the halfway mark in his ‘12 in 12’ challenge.
Laidlaw, son of the former Scotland and British & Irish Lions scrum-half, Roy Laidlaw, began 2021 with his first ever marathon, braving Arctic temperatures on New Year’s Day on a 26-mile course in the south-west of Edinburgh.
His plan, dubbed ‘12 in 12’, is to complete a marathon each month this year to raise funds for three charities which mean a lot to him: the Murrayfield Injured Players Foundation; Marie Curie; and Alzheimer’s Scotland.
Marathon six saw Laidlaw venture once again around the Kingdom of Fife. Starting from Kingseat, Laidlaw’s route took him into Crossgates and Cairneyhill, along the coastal path out towards Kincardine, along Culross and Torryburn, crossing his personal finish line in Limekilns.
“It’s crazy to think I’m halfway through my challenge now,” said Laidlaw.
“I was unable to complete a marathon in June because I was working with the Scotland Women Sevens team as Interim Head Coach, so it feels like it’s been a long time coming. There’s been a few tough ones to get to six, but I also have to remember I’ve still got six to go.
“I really enjoyed number six though. I hadn’t been able to do much training, so I was a wee bit apprehensive, and I think that’s now one of the biggest challenges, maintaining some form of training between them. With a busy workload it was tough to keep ticking over.
“I had a friend join me for the first 10K which was great but the rest I did solo which was definitely tough. I don’t think I’d choose to do that again, there are certain points where you would like to have someone there with you to keep you going but it was a good challenge."
Chris wrapped up marathon six in just under four and a half hours.
“The last part was really nice, I had a nice bit of downhill from Charlestown into Limekilns where I finished and was met by my family.”
Making up for a bit of lost time, Laidlaw took on his seventh marathon one week later in his hometown of Jedburgh and we'll have an update soon on this website on how he got on.
Before he set out on that challenge, Laidlaw said: “We’re going to start in Hawick and finish up at Jed-Forest Rugby Club. We’re starting at Hawick as it’s nice and high up so we should avoid having to run uphill. I’ve got over 20 people so far who have agreed to support me, I’m really delighted about that.
“Marathon seven is going to be a tough one, it’s going to be really emotional for both me as an individual and for my family as well. I think the biggest challenge with this marathon will be keeping my emotions at bay, because if you get emotional at the start of a run it just drains you. But knowing I’ll have the support of some of my good friends and my family, it’ll spur me on.”
Laidlaw had set an original fund-raising target of £3,000 but the latest total is approaching an incredible £12,000.
You can find out more about 12 in 12 and donate to support Laidlaw via his Just Giving page: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/12in12in21