Coast to Coast beckons 'vintage' runner

At 65, Paul Stuckey decides to do Coast to Coast

GEORGE HEAGNEY
Last updated 12:00 12/02/2014
Paul Stuckey
MURRAY WILSON/Fairfax NZ
READY: Palmerston North mountain runner Paul Stuckey will be competing in the Coast to Coast this weekend.

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Sixty-five was finally the year that Paul Stuckey decided to tick the Coast to Coast off his bucket list.

The Palmerston North man is competing in a team of three in the 140km cycle, 36km run and 67km kayak from the West Coast to Christchurch, on the east coast, this weekend.

Stuckey, who is doing the mountain running leg, said the competitors in his team were "all of the same vintage" so they needed to do something like this.

"I've done a lot of running over the years, but it's nice to have a little goal you're working towards," he said.

He has done 14 marathons since 2005, including one in Hangzhou, China, last year, along with 23,000 people.

He runs the Rotorua marathon every year..

Brian Grace from Porirua is the kayaker in the team and Vic Hewson from Waikanae is the cyclist.

Stuckey has been training by running the Manawatu Gorge track, around the Massey University tracks and up Pohangina Valley, along the river, in preparation for the mountain stage across the Southern Alps.

"If I'm still able to talk on Friday it will be all right."

It won't be his first event of this kind, though, as he competes in a lot of off-road events, including the Goat mountain run at Ruapehu and the Coromandel Classic.

He said all river running was hard, and because it would be his first time doing Coast to Coast the race would be tough ask.

"Obviously it's going to be taxing but I'm looking forward to the challenge."

Formerly a Pohangina farmer, Stuckey runs his own Turf Renovations business.

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- Manawatu Standard

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