Scientist’s Sahara marathon for charity


A St Andrews scientist is striving to finish a 150 mile marathon through the Sahara desert.

Paul Webb is a scientist at Sasol Technology, an international energy and chemical company with a research and development lab at the University of St Andrews. He is taking part in Marathon des Sables (MDS) from 3 to 14 April.

Mr Webb is attempting to raise more than £20,000 for St Andrews based charity Worldwide Cancer Research.

The charity is based on South Street and is the only UK charity that funds pioneering research worldwide into any type of cancer.

At the moment, he is training six times a week, running between ten and 20 miles per day.

Mr Webb is also testing out which equipment he will require whilst racing, from sleeping bags to stoves.

He is expecting to burn around three thousand calories per day whilst running the marathon and will be using high-calorie almond butter and Peperamis as his secret weapons to keep up his strength as he battles through the harsh conditions of the desert.

MDS is a multi-day event, which will see and Mr Webb face sandstorms, severe dehydration and extreme blisters. Competitors must be self-sufficient during the race and therefore carry everything they need throughout the race.

Mr Webb is forty-one and says his challenge is “to run a marathon on every continent, visiting Worldwide Cancer Research-funded scientists wherever I travel.

“I have already competed in a few normal marathons – London and New York – and done more varied races, including the Great Wall of China, as part of my fundraising and preparation.

“But without doubt the Marathon des Sables (MDS) will be my toughest challenge ever.”


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