Bridlington gym owner Steve Tighe is going back to tackle the World’s Toughest Mudder race in memory of one of his closest friends.
He is heading to Atlanta in Georgia in November to push himself to the limit physically, spurred on by the support he received over 20 years from Peave Bellerby.
Peave died of cancer in February at the age of 55 and Steve, who owns Blast Fitness in Bridlington, says fond memories of his friend will inspire him as he tackles the race for a fifth time.
“The biggest difference this time is the whole Peave factor,” said Steve. “His death has set me off on a training mission like never before and I am absolutely flying right now.”
“The fact that I am doing this for Peave has made it a very personal journey for me and it’s completely changed my training ethos.
“It has added a real dimension to my training. I am doing it for Peave and it feels effortless at the moment.
“Peave was brilliant, he was walking morale, a legend, constantly having a laugh, but at the same time a great guy. He was a true family man, an absolute grafter, worked super hard and played even harder and he was well respected in the town.”
World’s Toughest Mudder is a 24-hour endurance race that challenges participants to complete as many five-mile laps as possible, overcoming cliff jumps, electric shocks and water obstacles.
Nearly all of Steve’s training runs so far involve him going past the harbour and past Peave’s boat, because that was where he loved being.
“I feel that every time I go there, I feel like I am going to check in with him, and honour him with a quick salute,” Steve said.
“Peave would have been there in Atlanta and we were talking about it in his last few weeks, but obviously at that point we had no idea it would be his last few weeks.
“We were talking about looking forward to Atlanta and getting him strong and better, being my pit crew again, but I am over the moon that (Peave’s wife) Dawn is still coming out with me as pit crew. This will be a massive boost to me. It’s going to be like Peave being there and I am really excited about that.”
Steve needs sponsorship to get him to America, with flights, accommodation and car hire expected to cost £2,500. Once he passes that, the money raised willl be shared between Candlelighters and Cancer Research UK.
Steve is changing the format of the sponsorship this year. Normally he wears a kit bearing all the names and logos of the corporate companies who sponsor him.
This time he will dedicate one of his big training exercises to that one sponsor. “I will have a full set of training kit with just that one sponsor on, and I will do my big training event of that week, or that month, or whatever it might be and dedicate that portion of my training to them in my video blog.
“Each sponsor will receive its own individual thank you, as well as the big group photo and general thanks to them all,”
As part of the fund-raising, Gavin Kelly and Bridlington Town AFC have dedicated their annual Hull City ex-Tigers match at Queensgate tothe WTM Peave Memorial Fund.
Bridlington Rugby Club has already pledged to join in by hosting a sevens tournament and Bridlington CYP is on board, with five-a-side tournament. The proceeds from the annual football game in memory of Peave’s son Jackson, who sadly died at the age of 17 from asthma, will also go towards the final total.
Steve said: “There has been a massive response already from the local community and local businesses and I think that is because of three factors this time.
“This challenge is in Peave’s memory, it’s helping fight the battle against cancer that affects so many and it’s my last time doing it.
“It’s my last one, purely because it takes up so much of my life. It’s not an event where you are just training for a half marathon and spending a few weeks building up.
“It’s months and months of mental and physical preparation and it’s difficult to do when you are running your own business and have personal family issues.
“It’s a big thing to commit to, plus I have more challenges in mind,”