Hundreds take part in Gold Challenge

01 April 2012 / 19:57

The Gold Challenge charity test event at the Olympic Stadium on Sunday saw hundreds of people - many of them schoolchildren - given the chance to run 100m, either as part of a relay or a sprint, after raising money for their chosen charity.

Celebrity runners, including former rugby stars Austin Healey, Gareth Thomas and Mike Catt and singer Sinitta, ran in relays during the event.

There was even a special race for charity mascots, which was won by a runner in a giant daffodil outfit, taking part on behalf of Marie Curie Cancer Care.

Other celebrities inside the stadium for the test event included model Katie Price, present with son Harvey on behalf of Vision Charity, of which she is patron.

She said she "couldn't wait" for this summer's games and added: "I'm so honoured that I've been on the track."

The audience enjoyed performances from singers including Dionne Bromfield, god-daughter of the late Amy Winehouse, beat box group The Boxettes and former Britain's Got Talent winner Paul Potts.

As he took to the stage to sing Nessun Dorma, Potts said: "For me, it's amazing to be one of the first performers inside this wonderful stadium."

The Gold Challenge invites people of all ages and abilities to try out either five, 10, 20 or 30 Olympic and Paralympic sports by the end of 2012, raising money as they do so.

Healey, who took part in a 4 x 100m relay and 100m sprint in support of Childline and the NSPCC, said: "It's just a great day out and a big privilege. I think the event is great and hopefully it will be the first of many.

"We talk about the legacy of the Olympics - this stadium really belongs to the people of the UK and they should all get the opportunity to come down here and run on this track. It could inspire them to be the next Mo Farah, the next (Jessica) Ennis - we've got lots of potential out there in the UK. It could just be that little trigger that inspires a youngster."