After five years, 5400kms, 16 surgeries and one devastating hit and run accident, ultra-marathon runner Nick Ashill has finally completed his mission to cross the USA, while raising money for the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation NZ.
Elated but exhausted, Nick ran into New York on Sunday afternoon, after completing the final leg of his epic journey. He began his run five years ago, but it was brutally cut short at the 4000km mark after he was seriously injured in a hit and run accident. After multiple surgeries and a gruelling recovery, Nick returned to the US at the end of May to complete the final leg of the run.
At the finish line in Coney Island, Nick was overwhelmed by his achievement. "It’s been such a massive journey to get here at long last. I have so many wonderful people to thank who have made this happen; from the doctor’s that got me walking again to my amazing support crew who have kept me safe throughout the last 21 days."
While reaching his goal was a massive personal milestone, it was also a win for the thousands of people who suffer from the serious lung condition Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) in New Zealand and the UK. Inspired by his mother who passed away from IPF in 2015, Nick was running to raise money for the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation NZ (ARFNZ) and the UK-based Pulmonary Trust. He is just short of reaching his goal of making $10,000 for ARFNZ.
Nick has run 922km over the last 20 days, crossing from Ohio into West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and finally New York. He has endured extreme temperatures, thunderstorms, rattlesnakes, brutal hill climbs and massive blisters to complete more than a marathon each day.
Nick says is he now looking forward to a long rest, although he’s already considering his next adventure. "For now, though, my legs need a break," he says.
31 May, 2022
Wellington ultra-marathon runner Nick Ashill today begins the final leg of a 5400km run begun five years ago to raise funds for the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation NZ (ARFNZ) and the UK-based Pulmonary Fibrosis Trust.