Thirteen miles, sore legs and hours of training is enough to put anyone off running a half marathon but at 85 years old a former Halifax Town forward is taking on the challenge.
John Core, who played 29 matches for Halifax Town between 1948 and 1952, will go the extra mile this year to complete the Redcar Half Marathon on September 28.
The dedicated pensioner hopes to finish the race in under three hours and says his wife, Margaret Core, who passed away two years ago, was his inspiration.
“After my double hip replacement surgery I was told I couldn’t run so I started swimming three times a week, doing 64 lengths. My wife asked me a few years ago if I missed it so I decided to start again.
“I started off doing three miles three times a week and I gradually increased it the distance.
“People think I am crazy for doing [the half marathon] at this age,” John added.
The former Sowerby Bridge Grammar School student will run the half marathon with five members of his family, who are flying in from Holland and Australia but the avid runner insists he hasn’t always loved running.
“I hated [running] all my life but when I had to give up football I tried it and at first it was boring but once you run a marathon, you are hooked.”
Before his hip surgery, John ran marathon after marathon running five in Australia and four in the humid Singapore climate.
John previously played as a centre forward for Halifax Town, scoring 15 goals in 29 matches.
“I was never good at heading the ball but I was always able to get to my foot on the ball before it went into the net.”
Although not the first, John is one of the oldest remaining players.