Meet the Reebok Ragnar White Cliffs team

The world’s largest overnight running relay series, Ragnar holds epic road and trail events in some of the most breathtaking locations on earth. We've put together a crack Bug team to take on the inaugural UK race, coming to the UK this autumn. Meet the team preparing to run 170-miles over two days and one night, fuelled by friendship, camaraderie and true grit.

Meet the Reebok Ragnar White Cliffs team

Starting in the North Downs near Maidstone, the Reebok Ragnar White Cliffs route will lead teams of intrepid runners through some of the most stunning countryside south England has to offer, before culminating along Brighton’s iconic seafront for one almighty after party.

Read all about the upcoming Reebok Ragnar White Cliffs here! 

Meet the team preparing to run through the night...

Nikki Rees - Team captain

  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: Determined. Reliable. Daft. Runs. Bakes.
  • Nickname: On The Running Bug you probably know me as GwenDoll.
  • Why were you made captain of Team Bug? Er... no one else put their hand up, haha! I'm quite organised and happy to take on the race admin as well as attempting to be the team's biggest cheerleader!
  • How will you motivate your team? I think it's important to lead by example and get in the mix. It's also important to listen to the team in the lead-up and during the race, and generally be there for them if they have any worries or issues. I have no concerns that we won't pull together as a unit. Every member of Team Bug is solid and more than capable of the task ahead.
  • What’s your plan to win the race? To give it everything we have. We've planned our relay legs based on individual strengths and experiences. 
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? I had heard that the series was finally coming to the UK, which was extremely exciting. You only have to look up photos of the races in the US to see what awesome events these relays are (or check out the fab documentary From Fat to Finish line). The team element is so strong and I absolutely love being part of a team.  Every person brings something special and unique to the table and at the end we all get to proudly say that we are Ragnarians.
  • How long have you been running? I have been running since 2005, when I was diagnosed with adult asthma. It was my way of telling myself that I wouldn't let the condition beat me. I did a few races but didn't really start taking it a bit more seriously until 2013 when a new job landed me square in the centre of an all-running environment. That's when I started actually planning sessions, learning properly how to build speed and endurance and took on my first marathon.
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? I completed my first ultra marathon this year, the Chiltern Challenge 50k. To finally get to the start line of this race was a huge deal for me as it was the race I'd been training for when I suffered a stress injury and was forced to stop running for 10 months. I loved every step of the race and it's really piqued my interest in going further. 
  • Do you like running in the dark? I only recently ran in the dark for the first time at the Thunder Run. It had rained all day and on my second lap it was pitch black and my head torch really wasn't up to muster. I took it off my head to wrap around my hand and hold out in front of me while I ran but, while doing so, I missed a tree root and went flying (you'll see this is something of a theme). I ran the rest of the lap covered head to toe in mud - hopefully the night legs of the Ragnar Relay won't be quite so eventful. 
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? I'm not nervous about the challenge at all, just really excited for the day to arrive. I have every faith in Team Bug and I can't wait for us to get to share the experience and get our hands on that amazing medal. 
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you whilst running? Two miles into an eight mile run I tripped on some cobbles down by London Bridge and went skidding up the street on my hands / knees / face in front of a group of teenage tourists who though it was hilarious! Thanks to the adrenaline I did managed to complete my session, albeit dripping with blood and looking like a crazed person…
  • What’s your go to running fuel? For half and full marathons I tend to stick with Shot Blocks or High 5 lime flavoured gels, they really wake up your mouth as well as give you an energy boost! For longer distances I stick with real food; sandwiches, pretzels, cake. You name it, I'll probably eat it. I'm yet to come across a food that I can't eat on the run. (Touch wood).

Josh Allis

  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: Nerdy, happy, determined, caring, joker.  
  • Nickname: Joshy 
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? To make new friends, have fun and run as part of a team!!    
  • How long have you been running? 5 years  
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? Becoming part of Team Alzheimers Research UK's 2018 London Marathon Team.  
  • Do you like running in the dark? Never ran in the dark…. I hope so!!  
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Taking a wrong turn, its a rather long way to get lost!!   
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you whilst running? Derby Ramathon 2017 running into a metal gate at a fuel station and taking myself out, look where you are going always lesson learned. 
  • What’s your go to running fuel? Pre-Run Wine Gums or Jelly Babies, Intra High5 ISO Gel/SIS ISO Gel

William Lockwood

  • Sum yourself up in five words: Gluttonous fan of the outdoors.
  • Nickname: Willy Fresh
  • What made you want to run the Ragnar Relay? Teamwork and endurance sports are two of my favourite things, but they rarely intertwine. This was a perfect opportunity to combine the two in an epic race through stunning locations.
    How long have you been running? About six years, after stopping rowing due to a dodgy back and knees. I've felt great ever since.
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? In June I ran the 70.5-mile Laurel Highlands Ultra near Pittsburgh, USA. It took my friend and me 21 hours and was one of the more tiring things I've done in my life, but also one of the most enriching.
    Do you like running in the dark? I love running in the dark. I did nearly lose my mind running in the dark during Laurel Highlands, but that was mostly due to a combination of fatigue and the possibility of running into a rattlesnake or black bear at any moment.
    Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Relays are inherently difficult as you have to rest, refuel and recover in between legs. Keeping warm and recharging before another potentially difficult run will be a key watchpoint. Hopefully my engine's up to it and I know my team will give it 100%.
    What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you whilst running? Before a run during an event last year my nutrition really was not agreeing with me, so I was forced to deploy the squat-and-drop technique by the side of a walking path. Thankfully, it was overnight in a quiet area so I juuust about got away with it.
    What’s your go-to running fuel? Soreen during any kind of event is always good news. (Although after overloading on the stuff I can't look at it again for at least six months afterwards).

Coren Hanley

  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: happy, enthusiastic, committed, organised, optimistic 
    Nickname: I don't have one!
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? I love relays. This will be my fourth this year. I think it's the team element which attracts me to them, achieving something on your own is great but as part of a team you can share the journey, the achievement, pick each other up... I particularly like the idea of the Ragnar Relay because its point-to-point, the views will constantly change and the idea of driving in a support van sounds awesome!
  • How long have you been running? Just over three years.
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? Either qualifying for the 2018 London marathon with GFA time, or my team placing first in our category at Endure 24 earlier this year.
  • Do you like running in the dark: No!
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? The dark! I hate it. I'm scared I'll get attacked by bears, or fall off a cliff...
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you whilst running: a bird pooped on me. 
  • What’s your go to running fuel? In the morning oats with granola and banana. While on the run Clif blocs work a treat!

Justin Horrocks

  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: Too complicated for mere words
  • Nickname: Padre
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? The medals look awesome! Oh and the fact that its something new and completely different from anything thats on the UK running scene at the moment.
  • How long have you been running? 2008/9
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? Completing the Lakeland 50 for the first time in 2014. A 50 mile ultra in the Lake District, it took me nearly 19 hours and I lost about 2 kilos but the sense of achievement when I crossed the finish line cancelled out all the hardships of the event, completed it again this year and hope to go back again and improve on my times.
  • Do you like running in the dark? Not without a head torch! I've done a couple of ultras and 24 hour event and ran in the dark during those and I always think it feels completely different to daylight running.
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Turning up and being the only person there and have to try and run it alone.
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you while running? I ran Oxford half marathon a few years ago barefoot and I was running along a road and jumped onto the pavement and stepped in something that really should've been picked up by a good dog owner and nearly went head over heels in front of people.
  • What’s your go to running fuel? Haribo Tangfastics, Lucho Dillitos bocadillo Guava with coffee which taste amazing, anything to add to water to make it taste of anything other than plain water and for after Chocolate milkshake!

Melanie McKay

  • Nickname: I don't really have one
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? I love it when I get to run as part of a team, the challenge of doing legs of a relay, especially at night, and I'm hoping it'll be beautiful! 
  • How long have you been running? I started dabbling 2 years ago but regularly 20 months ago. 
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? Completing a 100km race, it isn't just the distance - I loved it! I had a really fun day and that meant the world to me! 
  • Do you like running in the dark? Yes! It actually makes me worry less about where I am putting my feet as I can't really see anyway.
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Letting the team down
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you whilst running? Oh blimey, probably something to do with my bowels! I seem to spend a lot of time desperately hunting a toilet! 
  • What’s your go to running fuel? Peanut butter (crunchy, of course) and jam bagels (cinnamon and raisin ones!)

Rebekah Emily

  • Name: Rebekah/Beks/Becky I answer to them all.
  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: Kind, caring but total doofus.
  • Nickname: nothing I'd really want to share in the public domain.
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? haven't raced for about 3 years, needed a kick up the backside and it sounds fun.
  • How long have you been running? I think consistently since 2009.
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? Couple of Marathons nothing majorly exciting.
  • Do you like running in the dark? Yes! My fav race ever was a night trail in mid winter and knee deep mud.
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? That I'm still not as fit as I used to be and that I might get lost.
  • What’s your go to running fuel? Shot Bloks or Torq gel.

Luke de-Benedictis

  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? I wanted to try something different, currently im competing in obstacle course racing so the Ragnar Relay so a chance to do something a little different and challenge myself.
  • How long have you been running? I started running cross county and 1500m in high school but I then I've only just come back into running again in April 2016
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? My biggest achievement so far is qualifying for the OCR World Championships as a pro competitor.
  • Do you like running in the dark? The only other night time running experience I've had was at Europe's Toughest Mudder ... but I don't think there will be any ice pits and too much mud on the Ragnar Relay so I should be ok! 
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Falling asleep and not being ready for my leg ...
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you whilst running? I don't really have an embarrassing running story .. does that mean I don't run enough?
  • What’s your go to running fuel? I'm quite a fan of pasta and tuna the night before.

Nicky Chapman

  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: Determined, helpful, persistent, 
  • Nickname: NikNak
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? I wanted a challenge, something different. The furthest I have ran to date is a half marathon.
  • How long have you been running? I was a sprinter at school then didn't run again until 2012 when I ran the Royal Parks 1/2 Marathon. 
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? My biggest achievement to date is a 55 minute 10K and completing Men's Health Survival of the Fittest.
  • Do you like running in the dark? I run regularly in the dark where I live & enjoy it.
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Not being ready to run or holding my team mates up.
  • What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you while running? I haven't got any embarrassing running stories, yet! Lol.
  • What’s your go to running fuel? The night before a race I always have spaghetti bolognese, then on the morning I'll have a protein shake, eggs and toast.

Fleur Hallett

  • Sum yourself up in 5 words: Fiery, ambitious, determined, outspoken, encouraging. 
  • What made you want to run The Ragnar Reebok race? Having followed the Ragnar series in the USA it always looked like such fun. More than just a race but a real team event with a great atmosphere. Ive never done a 24hour or Relay race and it was on my challenge bucket list so I thought what better than to combine the two. 
  • How long have you been running? 2.5 years
  • What’s your biggest running achievement to date? London marathon 2017. The training didn't go to plan, the race day plan went out the window. My watch and headphones both stopped working. My hip was very painful by Mile 16, but I dug very deep and tapped into a new level of mental strength and determination to get myself to the finish line, with a smile. 
  • Do you like running in the dark: Yes. There is something very cathartic about plunging through the darkness. 
  • Biggest fear about taking on the 170 miles? Not functioning very well when sleep deprived. 
  • What’s your go to running fuel? Cliff shot blocks / Cliff peanut butter bars.  

For more info on Ragnar Reebok White Cliffs, click here

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