Runners are being asked to carry an 85ft-long viking boat around the Edinburgh Marathon – to raise money for children with cancer.
The annual marathon takes place in May and while entry is still open it’s an event which has sold out every year since 2008.
One way to book a spot on the starting line is through a charity.
And one endeavour will see a group of 40 participants carry a replica of a Viking longship – weighing a quarter of a ton – through the entire 26.2 mile course.
The ‘Rock the Boat’ project has been launched by events firm Rat Race Adventure Sports, with all proceeds going to partner charity Children With Cancer UK.
To join the horde of marauders, places aboard the ship are now up for grabs.
Rat Race founder Jim Mee says each participant will need to commit to raising at least £500 per place and added: ‘With many UK marathons already sold out, we’re offering a particularly unique way of making it to the start line.’”
The Edinburgh Marathon takes place Sunday May 24, 2020.
It’s just one of a series of marathons where the viking boat will make an appearance next year, as Rat Race aims to raise £1 million for Children With Cancer UK.
And if you do join the viking crew, you could also end up breaking a Guinness World Record – as Rat Race aim to set the ‘fastest marathon in a forty-person costume’ time.
The boat – carried by way of specially made harnesses – had its debut at the recent Yorkshire Marathon, getting round in a time of six and a half hours.
And Rat Race event co-organiser Allie Bailey said that while the challenge is tough, it’s also rewarding.
Allie said: ‘Running a marathon is tough enough, let alone when you’re carrying a boat weighing a quarter of a ton.
‘And then there’s the problem of tackling tight turns in an 85ft-long vessel with a terrible turning circle, and coming across speedbumps and potholes in the road that you can’t actually see beneath you.’
The boat itself is made from a lightweight metal frame inside a plywood exterior.
Jim set up Rat Race Adventure Sports in 2004 and has seen it grow into one of the UK’s largest operators of mass participation, wilderness adventure challenges.
Meanwhile the Edinburgh Marathon is one of the flattest – and fastest – marathons in the UK, with organisers saying it’s ‘ideal if it’s your first marathon or you are looking for a Personal Best’ time.
It’s due to start in Potterrow with the finish line at the Pinkie Playing Fields in Musselburgh.
For information on how to sign up to Rock The Boat, head here: www.marathonmarauders.com