- BC Games
Lynn Valley man preparing for ultimate urban challenge
Graham Coulthard is getting ready to leap over cars and scramble up buses for “Lions Gate Lockdown,” swing over the muddy waters of Lost Lagoon and climb two steep storeys up the “Chief.”
Along with his team, he’s taking part in the Concrete Hero Ultimate Urban Obstacle Challenge on Sept. 29.
The chip-timed, nine-kilometre course covers streets and alleyways in downtown Vancouver and incorporates a mix of landmarks, which are replicated as obstacles along the way. Money raised goes to the BC Cancer Foundation.
This race hits home for Coulthard, who lives in Lynn Valley and works as a graphic designer.
“My mom died from breast cancer in 1972,” he tells The Outlook, his five teammates by his side.
Then 20 years later his good friend passed away after a lengthy battle with brain cancer, followed by another close friend and co-worker just before Christmas of 2011.
Now, unfortunately, a friend recently had a double mastectomy and is undergoing gruelling chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer.
In honour of these loved ones, Coulthard and his team have been working on muscle and flexibility for the Concrete Hero challenge with Gfit Outdoor Fitness Bootcamps, particularly by tackling the hills and stairs near Jericho Beach.
The veteran runner has also participated in the Spartan Race, an intense obstacle course that took place in North Van this spring; the Tough Mudder, Whistler’s famous “Ironman meets Burning Man” course; the Vancouver Sun Run and many others.
“It’s going to be fun but it should also be really challenging,” says Coulthard, who is excited friends can easily make it out to watch him do the obstacle course since its downtown.
“And it’s all for a good cause,” he adds.
Among the many obstacles, his team (Lisa Scherba, Leah Reid, Janice Raffin, Justin Manning and Salim Hassan) will suspend themselves on ropes over murky water for the “Lost Lagoon” challenge and, using all their upper body strength, try to swing across bars without dropping. They will also push through the “Second Beach Dash” where competitors crawl their way threw slimy faux seaweed.
The challenge starts at Strathcona Park Oval at Raymar Avenue and William Street, with the exact time to be determined.
“[Concrete Hero] appeals to a whole different segment of people,” explains Hassan of the obstacle course that can be completed by all ages and fitness levels.
Each team member is raising a minimum of $400 to compete in the race. To donate go to concretehero.ca (click on Donate then type “SuperHeroes in Training” under team name).