Instead of racing the London Marathon, Davis will run a 2.6-mile relay leg for charity on her way to work on hospital coronavirus wards
On the day that should have seen her taking to the elite start line of the Virgin Money London Marathon, Eleanor Davis will still be running but instead it will be a 2.6-mile relay leg on her way to work on hospital Covid-19 wards in Stockport.
The doctor, who usually works part-time to balance it with her athletics career, has a marathon PB of 2:33:24 and had originally formed part of a strong domestic women’s field for the London race, which had been set to incorporate the British trial for the Tokyo Olympic Games marathon.
But the coronavirus crisis changed all that. Davis’ focus now is on being a doctor, the Olympics has been postponed to 2021 and the London Marathon moved to October.
Although she will be working on Sunday, Davis was still keen to get involved with The 2.6 Challenge fundraising campaign launched by the London Marathon and other mass-participation event organisers.
This weekend myself and these amazing girls were supposed to be chasing our dreams on the streets of London. Instead, in solidarity we are running a 2.6 mile virtual relay for @MindCharity ….I will do my leg on the way to work @StockportNHS covid wards. #joinus #donate pic.twitter.com/tpPXY4SMlt
— Eleanor Whyman-Davis (@elseydavis1) April 23, 2020
The London race is the biggest fundraising event of the year for many charities and it is estimated that the UK charity sector will lose £4 billion in income as a result of the pandemic.
People are being encouraged to take on an activity based around the numbers 2.6 or 26 and so Davis will team up, remotely, with 11 fellow British elite marathoners who should also have been running the London Marathon to raise money for the charity Mind.
Davis’ relay team includes Steph Twell, Jo Pavey, Hayley Carruthers, Tish Jones, Jess Piasecki, Rebecca Murray, Steph Davis, Aly Dixon, Helen Davies, Natasha Cockram and Alice Wright and each athlete will run 2.6 miles.
“This weekend myself and these amazing girls were supposed to be chasing our dreams on the streets of London. Instead, in solidarity we are running a 2.6-mile virtual relay for Mind,” Davis wrote on social media.
“I will do my leg on the way to work @StockportNHS covid wards.”
Their fundraising page can be found at justgiving.com/fundraising/britishmarathonwomen
Other challenges being taken on include a 2.6-mile run and javelin throw by 2008 Olympic bronze medallist Goldie Sayers and 26-minute run by 1984 Olympic 3000m silver medallist Wendy Sly who are both raising money for the Ron Pickering Memorial Fund (read more here).
For more on The 2.6 Challenge, visit twopointsixchallenge.co.uk