‘Blade runner’ aims to repeat Leeds Abbey Dash success

Adrian Howden in training.
Adrian Howden in training.
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Thirty years ago, Adrian Howden won the very first Leeds Abbey Dash – and tomorrow he will take on the challenge again.

But after having his right leg amputated following an accident 10 years ago, this time he will be competing using a hi-tech running blade.

Since being fitted with the specialist limb by Leeds-firm Steeper, the former international distance runner has competed in 50 triathlons around the world.

He said that he was ready to return to the 10k Abbey Dash after first taking part in the inaugural race in 1986, before the amputation.

“Other runners that I meet are always impressed when I tell them I won the race 30 years ago and will be running it again with the blade Steeper have provided,” he said.

Adrian, from Roundhay, had his right leg amputated below the knee in 2006 after being hit by a motorcycle.

He was prescribed the specialist Steeper carbon fibre running blade which has helped propel his success, including finishing third in his age group at this year’s Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon in Leeds.

A spokesman for Steeper, which works with the Specialist Rehabilitation Centre at Seacroft Hospital, said: “He always has a smile and pushes himself and the equipment to the maximum, showing what can be achieved with hard work and dedication.”

The Age UK Leeds Abbey Dash, which is backed by the Yorkshire Evening Post, takes place tomorrow.

Coverage of the event will be online tomorrow and in Monday’s paper.

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