Kirkcaldy marathon runner gets GB call-up

Derek Rae running at the Great Scottish Run where he completed a half marathon in 1:13.03
Derek Rae running at the Great Scottish Run where he completed a half marathon in 1:13.03

Kirkcaldy runner Derek Rae has been selected for the British Athletics marathon team for the 2015 IPC World Championships.

The 26.2 mile route will be staged on Sunday, April 26 at the Virgin Money London Marathon in advance of the IPC World Track and Field Championships in Doha this October.

Derek, who is a member of Anster Haddies and is coached by Ron Morrison and former Olympian Don MacGregor of Fife AC in St Andrews, will be making his first appearance in a GB vest.

Over the past year Derek’s coaching team has managed his programme exceptionally well and each and every time he has taken to the roads in a major event he has recorded a personal best performance.

At one time Derek would run anywhere any time but since 2014 his carefully managed programme has taken him to a level where GB Paralympic head coach Paula Dunn and her team have offered him the opportunity to compete on the world stage.

Derek was a successful marathon runner prior to a motor cycle accident resulting in a brachial plexus injury that led to qualification as a T46 runner in Para-athletics.

He is one of only six GB athletes selected for the GB and Northern Ireland Marathon team and the selection of the Disability Sport Fife member is a culmination of incredible hard work over a significant number of years.

Derek has a highly committed backup team and they have played a vital role in supporting and encouraging him along the way.

Among the many delighted bystanders will be his fellow Anster Haddies plus the NHS Fife medical physio teams who played such an important role after Derek’s accident.

Derek’s wife Susan and his parents, Susan and Les, are over the moon about the selection.

Derek is considered an inspiration to Para-sport and mainstream athletes throughout the country and within Fife he has been an incredible ambassador for disability sport since he joined the Fife programme.

He is also first to acknowledge the many people across Fife who have supported him in so many ways.

Derek acknowledges that this is another milestone in the athletics career that he hopes one day will lead him to GB selection for a Paralympic Games.