Cigna supports athletes competing in 2019 Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon.

Cigna supports athletes competing in 2019 Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon.

On Saturday 18 May participants of all ages and abilities will take part in the Cigna 10km race/ event at the Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon.

Cigna will also be supporting three Achilles New Zealand athletes and their guides who are taking part for the first time in the Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon.

Cigna New Zealand Chief Marketing Officer, Vince Warnock, says Cigna is proud to be getting behind Achilles New Zealand, and everyone taking part in the Cigna 10km and wider marathon races this year in Hawke’s Bay.

“Cigna is passionate about protecting the health and wellbeing of New Zealanders and is committed to supporting our communities by encouraging everyone to get out and get active, no matter their ability,” says Warnock.

Find out more about the athletes:

 

FROM ACHILLES:

TARA GRAHAM – CIGNA 10KM:

Tara is visually impaired, and suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, this will be her first Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon. Tara will be walking with her daughter Laura as her guide. She’s looking forward to having the opportunity to enjoy the stunning Hawke’s Bay surrounds during her walk and to have her daughter walking with her. Tara highly recommends Achilles as they are so supportive of their members. They empower them to take part in events and provide guides.

STEPHEN JENKINS – NEW ZEALAND SOTHEBY'S INTERNATIONAL REALTY HALF MARATHON:

Stephen has grown up with Autism. He was introduced to Achilles and got into running about three years ago through his school friend Tamati Pearse and has since run two New York marathons with Achilles and a number of half marathons across the country. Stephen is looking forward to Hawke’s Bay because he hasn’t done the course before and is aiming for a personal best of two hours or under. He has been working hard over the past few months to achieve this, following a training programme developed by Lydia O’Donnell. Stephen will be running with his guides Samantha Hall and Lucy Edwards.

TAMATI PEARSE – NEW ZEALAND SOTHEBY'S INTERNATIONAL REALTY HALF MARATHON:

Tamati is legally blind, this is the first time he will be competing in the Hawke’s Bay Marathon. His first introduction to Achilles came when he needed to start training for an Outward Bound course in which he was required to run 3km each morning – Achilles gave him the training and tools to be able to take part. Since then, with Achilles support Tamati has done the New York Marathon three times, and Rotorua Marathon twice. Tamati will be aiming for under three hours for Hawke’s Bay this year, a bit slower than usual as he has taken some time off running to focus on his new job.  He will be running with his guides Dick Breukink and Millie Holden.

 

CIGNA 10KM PARTICIPANTS

DEBBIE GOUGH

 

Eight months ago Debbie from Havelock North suffered a sub arachnoid haemorrhage and subsequently spent two months in hospital. Walking her Jack Russell, Otis, each day has been a huge part of her recovery. Taking part in the Cigna 10km race with her friend and niece this weekend will be the culmination of her hard work and dedication to getting back on her feet and active.

 

 

NICOLA JOY WHISTLER

 

Napier local Nicola and her cousin have been supporting each other in their weight loss journey.  They will be walking the Cigna 10km race together this weekend, along with Nicola’s Dad, as a celebration of their hard work to date. Nicola has lost 15kgs so far in her journey so far, she’s currently able to run 5kms, but is aiming to be able to run the 10km race next year.

 

 

KAYLA SYMINTON

 

Kayla was 170kg three years ago and has since lost 70kg. Signing up to run the Cigna 10km race, and being part of the Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon for the first time has been her motivation to get active and shed the rest of her weight.

 

 

 

KIM HILLS

 

Kim and her girlfriends will be taking part in the NZ Sotheby’s Half Marathon and the Cigna 10km event. They went to school with each other over 40 years ago, and try to meet up at least once a year. This year they decided to get involved in the Air New Zealand Hawke’s Bay International Marathon as part of their girls weekend.

Good luck to all the athletes!