A visually impaired Whiteabbey man is set to compete in an ‘alternative triathlon’ next month in aid of a very worthy cause.
Pete Lock will take on the 70K challenge involving running, sailing and cycling on June 10 to raise funds for Guide Dogs NI, while raising awareness of Stargardt’s disease.
Pete (44), who works for Guide Dogs NI, was diagnosed with Stargardt’s disease aged 17. He said: “I was registered with a severe sight loss by the time I was 23. The condition causes a slow loss of central vision, which results in blurred vision initially, but as the condition deteriorates I have developed a blind spot, which means I can’t see things directly in front of me.
“I find it difficult to read, write and see detail clearly. I can barely see my face in a mirror at one metre, so seeing others can be difficult. Getting around unfamiliar places can be hard, especially when you can’t see street names, shop signs and bus numbers. But I have always strived to be fiercely independent.”
Starting at 9am, Pete will take on a 10k run from Hazelbank to Carrickfergus Sailing Club, sail to Bangor and then cycle 45K back to Carrick via the Craigantlet Hills.
He explained: “It is a personal challenge and I’ll be using three guides, Karen Waring - guide runner, Richard Bradley - tandem pilot and Trevor Kirkpatrick for sailing. There has been so many other people involved as part of the training, the support and encouragement from everyone has been amazing. Without volunteer guide runners and tandem pilots, none of this would’ve been possible.”
The 10k run has been opened up to 100 runners to raise further funds. Pete has set a personal fundraising target of £1,000. If you would like to donate, go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/peter-lock1
To register for one of the places on the run, go to www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/petes-alternative- triathlon-10k- run-in-support-of-guide-dogs-tickets-31429630872?utm_term=eventname_text