Kenilworth's marathon man only eight races away from 500-marathon target after beating London heat

David Phillips (left) with Olympic hurdler Colin Jackson, the honorary captain of Team Phillips in 2018
David Phillips (left) with Olympic hurdler Colin Jackson, the honorary captain of Team Phillips in 2018

Kenilworth's marathon man is now just eight races away from his target of 500 completed marathons after beating the heat to finish the London Marathon last Sunday (April 22).

David Phillips, 74, who has run an accountancy firm based in Kenilworth for more than 40 years, ran a slower time than usual but finished without any problems.

He, along with runners from 'Team Phillips', was able to raise £10,000 for the Brain and Spine Foundation, and presented a cheque to Team Phillips' honorary captain Colin Jackson at the end of the course.

The heat on the day meant it was one of the hottest London Marathons in years. But David, who lives in Claverdon, used his experience meant he was able to finish.

David said: "It was very, very hot - it must have been about 23 or 24 degrees. Lots of people passed out.

"But I just went slowly and took longer than usual. It was hard going, but not that bad because although it was hot, it wasn't oppressive and humid.

"The heat doesn't bother me too much. It's definitely better than rain."

While the heat caused problems for some runners, it drew huge crowds to cheer all the runners on.

David added: "What was fantastic were the massive crowds - they must have been ten deep at Cutty Sark. You couldn't have wished for anything better.

"As I was coming to the end at The Mall I thought I was at the coronation of the Queen. It was such a huge event. I've never seen crowds like that."

Sunday's marathon was David's 492nd, and he is aiming to complete his 500th marathon in Stratford.

His other goal was to raise £100,000 for the Brain and Spine Foundation, which he achieved in 2017. The total now stands at £117,000.

Even after he breaks the 500-marathon barrier, David said he still aims to keep on running.

In a previous interview, he added: "I’ll still just keep running, but I won’t have any targets. I’ve been running all my life, and I’d love to carry on.”

His commitment to raising money for charity through his marathons has also earned him and his wife Robina an invite to a Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in May.

Anyone wishing to donate to the Brain and Spine Foundation should click here