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Moffat milestone for fundraiser Lee

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By Ben Murray
Moffat milestone for fundraiser Lee
MAKING HISTORY . . . Lee was happy to get to Moffat

AN RAC patrolman making history with the first unsupported John O’Groats to Lands End has passed through Moffat.

And it proved a special moment for Lee Wingate from Portsmouth as it was in Upper Annandale that he had to give up on the same challenge two years ago.

Lee is currently running around 860 miles completely unaided over the course of 18-21 days to raise funds for The Royal Marines Charity in memory of his grandfather who was a Royal Marines Commando.

He crossed the border at the weekend, passing through Moffat as he battled with unseasonal heat, a lack of sleep, and personal demons that have haunted him for two years.

To qualify as being 100 per cent unsupported, Lee cannot accept any help and must remain entirely alone from beginning to end, relying on his own resources and carrying everything he needs in a supply pram, dubbed ‘Frankie’. He is wild camping and collecting all his water from rivers and streams.

To prepare for the challenge, Lee has run 30 to 80 miles a week for many months.

Lee attempted the same route in 2021 but had to give up in Moffat due to pram issues.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN . . . RAC Patrolman Lee Wingate attempts the world’s first unsupported JOGLE

He added: “Two years ago my pram broke in Queensferry and I turned it into a rickshaw and dragged it all the way up to Moffat.

“It was -6c at night, my shoulder had gone solid from being in one position holding the pram all day, but I was determined.

“This part of the route is also a constant incline for 15-20 miles so it was tough. Then, the back wheel broke off. With no way of fixing it, I had to push the pram to the side and take what I wanted of value then had to break the news to the family I was running for, that I couldn’t carry on.

“It was one of the worst experiences of my life and has affected me the last two years. Today I managed to get there and it was like a weight lifting off me.

“You have to get every aspect right when you tackle endurance or multi-day challenges like this, it becomes more about the mental strength than physical.

“If you aren’t mentally in the right place, it will make everything more difficult and every problem bigger than it actually is.

“It’s always easy to talk yourself out of finishing something – that’s the easy route.”

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Annan and Eskdale

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