Jaymie Mart has just beamed this news through about her London Marathon fundraising run for the Tara Llanes appeal. Read Jaymie's full tara story in Dirt 75 but in the mean time dig deep and sponsor her run.

Most of you by now will be familiar with the injuries sustained by Tara Llanes as a result of a crash at the Jeep King of the Mountain finals in Beaver Creek Colorado on September 1st 2007. 6 months down the line, Tara is going through extensive rehabilitation in an attempt to get back on her bike. I spent some time with her in rehab in Colorado in December and it was one of the most eye opening experiences of my life. Tara is fighting paraplegia head on; she is grinding her teeth and battling through each day in rehab like a true champion.

World wide, riders have been holding auctions and charity races to raise money to donate to Tara’s campaign to help with the cost of her treatment and medical bills. Tara needs to ensure she can access everything that will give her the best possible fighting chance to get back on her feet. Ultimately, that comes at a cost, which is rising daily. I looked into organising a race in the UK to raise money to help her, however, after adhering to health and safety requirements and attempting to deal with the impossibility of organising uplift, the reality of making any profit to donate to Tara’s campaign was near on zero!!

Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

4500 miles away, on the other side of the pond, I stepped on the road to recovery with her. With a little help from my friends at Lucozade, I secured a place on Team Lucozade Sport to run the Flora London Marathon on the 13th April. Running isn’t my forte at all; actually, I suck at it. As a DH racer with no real running experience, this marathon is a massive challenge for me!! In her own words when I first told her what I was doing, Tara said ‘J, I seriously can't tell you how f%&king unreal it is that you’re doing a marathon for me!! I mean s*^t....you don't even RUN’ She ain’t wrong, until 3 months ago; practically, the only thing I would run really run for was a bus!! I wanted to do something worthwhile, challenging and honourable to raise as much as I can for a friend in need.

Training in-between work has been time consuming, tiring and tough, but it’s been going well. I have been fitting in regular sessions since the middle of January. Working away from home means I have had to run in some crazy places up and down the UK including; The Isle of Arran, Sheffield, Northampton, Inverness, Devonshire, Gloucester, Manchester, London, Brighton, Southend, Wales, York, Glasgow and The Lake District in wind, rain, snow and sunshine, on mountain, road, trail and track!!

Please don’t forget Tara, her battle is very much ongoing. Sponsor me to help support her. Pop onto her site and donate some of the queen’s finest pounds and pennies to her campaign.


I’ll update my blog after the event and let you know how I get on. Many thanks in advance for your support.

Jaymie Mart


Photos: Anne Keller.

Tara Llanes news