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Duo set for mammoth 125-mile charity kayak race

PUBLISHED: 19:04 19 January 2019 | UPDATED: 15:17 22 January 2019

Matthew Hague, 29, left, and Oliver Ainsworth, 23, right, will complete the mammoth race in April Picture: OLIVER AINSWORTH

Matthew Hague, 29, left, and Oliver Ainsworth, 23, right, will complete the mammoth race in April Picture: OLIVER AINSWORTH

Archant

A pair of land agents will complete a 125-mile kayak race in under 30 hours to raise money for two Suffolk charities.

Matthew Hague and Oliver Ainsworth hope to riase £5,000 for charity Picture: OLIVER AINSWORTHMatthew Hague and Oliver Ainsworth hope to riase £5,000 for charity Picture: OLIVER AINSWORTH

Matthew Hague, 29, and Oliver Ainsworth, 23, who work at the Strutt and Parker estate agents’ Ipswich office, will take to their two-man kayak on Saturday, April 20 to raise £5,000 for their chosen foundations.

Starting from Devizes, Wiltshire, the duo will cover the 125 miles of water to Westminster, spending a gruelling 30 hours paddling almost non-stop.

They will also have to move their kayak between obstacles on land 77 times, covering almost 13 miles on foot alone.

The men will battle through the night, stopping only twice to stock-up on Mars bars and flapjack whilst facing a flurry of blisters and adverse weather.

Matthew Hague and Oliver Ainsworth trained for the event even over Christmas Picture: OLIVER AINSWORTHMatthew Hague and Oliver Ainsworth trained for the event even over Christmas Picture: OLIVER AINSWORTH

Mr Hague is almost a complete novice when it comes to the sport.

He said: “I stepped into a kayak in November and did my first race last week, it was awful!

“But Oli is very experienced and a good coach to me.”

Mr Ainsworth has completed the race before but has never attempted it overnight.

He said: “It’s going to be tough, without having done it overnight before, you’re never going to get fully prepared for the lack of sleep.

“We have to go to war with yourself to keep going.”

“It’s going to be tough, without having done it overnight before, you’re never going to get fully prepared for the lack of sleep.

“Everything will hurt, you have to use your whole body to keep the boat balanced otherwise it’s going over and you can’t flip it back.”

Mr Ainsworth will be kayaking for The Charlie Watkins Foundation, set-up in memory of 22-year-old Charlie Watkins who sadly lost his battle with depression in March, 2017.

He said: “Charlie and I grew up together and we have known each other pretty much all our lives.

“After he lost his battle, Charlie’s twin brother Harry set-up the foundation and they’ve been doing so much good for mental health.

“This is a great chance for me to punish my body and get donations into them.”

Matthew Hague is supporting the The Suffolk Community Foundation which directs funds to a range of small charities throughout Suffolk.

He said: “They represent a vast number of small local charities who don’t have the time to fundraise themselves.

“There are quite large parts of Suffolk that are deprived and need the foundations support, they do an amazing job.”

To support the pair go to their giving page.

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