This weekend, yet another two Drew’s students will be inspiring us all with not only athletic ability, but more importantly dedication, hard work, and ‘ticker.’
On Sunday, Sophie French and Ella Brown will be competing in the annual Sydney Morning Herald’s half marathon. Ella is a sophomore from Wellington, New Zealand, and Sophie a third year from Forbes, NSW. They are both very sporty and participate in netball and basketball at Drew’s, with Ella also playing netball and water polo for Sydney University. Their schedules are very busy academically but are dedicated to wake up at 5am two mornings a week to train for an athletic feat most of us would not dream of! However, it is not the grueling early trainings and sacrifices of nights out for which Ella and Sophie need to be commended, it is the cause for which they are donating their run to.
As captured in the Sydney Morning Herald a few weeks ago (http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/smh-half-marathon-runner-honours-late-mother-20160422-gocige.html), Ella and Sophie’s team are running for a cancer research charity called Can Too. This cause hits close to home for Ella as she sadly lost her mum to cancer during her last year of high school. Thus it is with great admiration and esteem that we, her friends at Drew’s, watch her and Sophie work hard in honor of her mother. Their team trains twice a week with a combination of exercises and practice runs to whip them into shape for the big day.
According to Ella, Sophie is the fastest in the group and will be sure to achieve a personal best time on Sunday. I was lucky enough to get to sit down with both of them in a more personal setting and chat to them about their experiences, and what impact college life has with accomplishments such as this one.
Do you feel that being at Drew’s has influenced your drive to participate in events like this?
Ella: I would say so, simply through being around such an encouraged sporting environment. I feel I am more supported in taking a risk like this.
Sophie: I agree!
Would you class yourself as much of a runner before this?
Ella: No, I only ever ran for netball fitness, never enjoyed it, I actually dreaded running! But now I really like it and am able to sustain runs whilst having fun.
Sophie: Yes, I used to run quite a bit at school, cross country mostly. I really enjoy running as it keeps me focused.
How are you going with your fundraising goals?
Ella: I’m at $2,990 and my goal was $1,250! And that was sponsored through friends, family, and friends’ families who really got around it which was nice.
Are you nervous for the race?
Ella: Yes, just because I’ve never done anything like it before. It will be a testament to the training!
Sophie: Yes, extremely!
To sponsor Ella and Sophie please visit http://www.cantoo.org.au. We will all be cheering them on this weekend and take our hats off to the difference they are making and the cause they are supporting. Go Ella and Soph!
– Hilary Shannon