RUNNING: PROLIFIC Great Sutton marathon man Phil Rhodes has been forced to withdraw from this year's London race after breaking his heel bone in a skiing accident.
Phil, 26, was due to run the course on April 17, raising funds for Children with Leukaemia with friend Nick Eagling, also 26 and of Little Sutton, who made a successful recovery from the illness as a child.
The pair had been given Mr Men costumes by the charity with Nick to dress as Mr Bump and Phil as Mr Tickle, but it was the latter who took a tumble while on holiday in Andorra.
Phil said: 'I went down the side of a bank on a mountain and didn't stop and hit some sharp rocks at speed. I was taken to hospital, had my leg in plaster and was back in my apartment within an hour and was determined to still run the marathon. However, on returning to England I went for another x-ray and discovered the full extent of my injuries.
'I won't be able to walk or drive for four months and I'm absolutely gutted to be missing out on the London Marathon.
'It will be Nick's first and he wasn't sure whether he was going to continue without me, but we've persuaded him to go ahead and do it no matter how long it takes him.'
Phil, who is also currently unable to fulfil his duties as a ju-jitsu instructor, ran nine marathons last year, including Europe's toughest 'Snowdon' with just two days' notice, and one on a treadmill at the Sainsbury's store at Cheshire Oaks.
He said: 'I was involved in a charity auction where women could bid for men to be their slave. I was a bit apprehensive when I was bought by a man but he told me he was supposed to be running the Snowdon Marathon 48 hours later and he wanted me to take his place.'
However, Phil's injury did not prevent the pair from taking part in the Liverpool Half Marathon, complete with costumes.
Phil's friends Paul Howells, Paul Byard and Andy Carr, who he met last year on the Marathon des Sables, a gruelling 150-mile run through the Sahara Desert, pushed him around the 13-mile course with Nick running alongside.
Phil has organised a ju-jitsu junior ground fighting competition, games and senior course at the EPIC Leisure Centre on Sunday, April 10, with all proceeds going to Children with Leukaemia.
For more details or to donate, e-mail Phil on firstname.lastname@example.org