XL Catlin exec to attempt ultramarathon for charity

Robin Johnson, Country Manager of global insurance company XL Catlin’s Australian operations, will be running the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB), aiming to raise $50,000 for Australian Cancer Research Foundation.

The UTMB is a single-stage mountain ultramarathon widely regarded as one of the most difficult foot races in the world, consisting of a 170km (100 miles) non-stop race around Mont-Blanc in the French Alps, with over 10,000m (30,000ft) worth of vertical ascents and descents, and just 46 hours to complete the course.

Johnson says: ““Like many of us, I’ve lost friends and relatives to cancer, and scarily over the past few years I’ve started to see friends my own age diagnosed with cancer. Technology is progressing at such a high speed in all aspects of our lives, and cancer research is part of that. We’ve made giant strides in the diagnosis and treatment of cancers in recent years, but with better funding the research community will be able to make progress faster, so that none of my friends’ kids have to grow up without a mum or dad. That’s why I’ve been raising money for the ACRF, an organization committed to beating cancer through research.”

Undertaking superhuman races to support his preferred charities is nothing new for Johnson, in April 2016, he ran through the Sahara desert in 50°C heat, with no one and nothing to be seen in any direction but sand and rock. He was taking part in the Marathon des Sables, a 257km (160 miles) self-supported stage race referred to by the Discovery Channel as “The Toughest Footrace on Earth”, in an effort to raise money for Australian Cancer Research Foundation. Despite the heat, sandstorms and some horrific blisters, he finished a proud 81 out of 1,300 runners, raising tens of thousands of dollars for Cancer Research in the process.

Established in 1984, the Australian Cancer Research Foundation has become a leading cancer charity foundation in Australia. In total, the Australian Cancer Research Foundation has awarded $129.2 million in cancer research grants to world-class Australian research initiatives. The donations they receive go to research with the power to beat cancer – research that is vital to the development of effective treatments and diagnostic measures for all types of cancer.

Robin will be running his race around Mont-Blanc on the 1 September 2017 and if you’d like to make a tax-deductible donation, please click here.