Deliveroo rider to face the ‘toughest’ foot race

Engineer Adam Ball is running the Marathon des Sables in April and is using his part-time job as a Deliveroo rider to get fit for the challenge and raise money for charity.
Engineer Adam Ball is running the Marathon des Sables in April and is using his part-time job as a Deliveroo rider to get fit for the challenge and raise money for charity.
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A food delivery cyclist who lives in Leamington is donating all of his earnings from the part-time job to a children’s charity he will be supporting when he takes on the ‘world’s toughest foot race’.

Adam Ball, 27, who works as an engineer for Ricardo by day, decided to take an extra job as a rider for Deliveroo in December.

The Marathon des Sables in the Sahara Desert

The Marathon des Sables in the Sahara Desert

He is using the exercise as part of his training for when he takes part in the Marathon Des Sables in April.

And he is giving every penny he earns from the job - from which he earns £6 pr hour over two six-hour shifts a week plus an extra £1 for each delivery he completes - to Hope For Children as part of his participation in the marathon, which challenges competitors to complete a 156-mile course across the Sahara Desert over six-days.

Mr Ball, who comes from Oldham, said: “ You could say I’m crazy donating all my Deliveroo wages to charity but it’s not the craziest thing I’m doing this year.

“The Marathon des Sables is the toughest footrace on earth.

“That means running over endless dunes, over rocky jebels and across white-hot salt plains in temperatures regularly reaching 50 centigrade.

“On top of that, entrants have to be entirely self-sufficient, carrying everything from food to equipment that may be needed for the whole week - on your back.

“Water is rationed and if you exceed the ration, you get a time penalty - which is all pretty gruelling.”

On top of his entry and travel fees, which Mr Ball has covered himself, he has also set himself a fundraising target of £8,000.

Some of this will be raised through his work for Deliveroo and the company will also be sponsoring him.

Mr Ball said: “Children deserve every opportunity they can and they can’t always help themselves which is why it’s nice to be supporting this good cause.

“To date, I’ve raised £1,330 for Hope for Children. It’s a great start, but it’s still a long way from my £8,000 target. I’ve also been training steadily over the past six months, but it’s time to ramp it up.”

On top of the twenty miles he can cover while cycling with a box of food on his back on his twice weekly shifts for Deliveroo, Mr Ball has also been running with weights in a backpack.

In the past he has ran marathons in Paris, Rome and Amsterdam but he said the Marathon des Sables will be more of a case of ‘just keeping going’ as opposed to racing to achieve a certain time or finishing position.

Participants have also been known to drop out of the race due to severe blisters on their feet so Mr Ball has been treating his with surgical spirit and walking around with no shoes or socks on wherever possible to toughen them up.

he said: “I’ve set myself a goal of finishing in the top 50 but until the race starts I have no idea how I’ll find it.

“But I’m relaxed and very excited about the adventure.”

www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Adam-Ball4