Skip to content

Team Shooting Star conquer the London Marathon

April 25, 2024

In an awe-inspiring display of athleticism, camaraderie and determination, 58 Shooting Star Children’s Hospices runners paced the streets of the capital for the 44th TSC London Marathon and raised a record breaking £215,038 and counting.

Team Shooting Star included members of families who are supported by the charity, long-term supporters, first-timers, serial marathoners, staff members and even a piranha fish, as Patron Joel Dommett ‘scaled’ up the challenge by wearing the fin-tastic costume worn by Danny Jones in the latest series of The Masked Singer.

After completing the world-renowned route in five hours and 19 minutes, Joel admitted he had to ‘dig deep’ in order to finish the gruelling 26.2-mile journey.

“It was definitely the hardest marathon I’ve done,” he told the TCS London Marathon. “I really had to dig deep. Lots of shouting to myself. The hard thing was it (the costume) was just banging against my head the entire time. I think I’m about three inches shorter now.”

The Masked Singer host and comedian explained his choice to don the piranha costume, stating that he “wanted to do it in a different way and raise some money for a great charity.” With £10,000 already donated to Joel’s fundraising efforts in support of Shooting Star Children’s Hospices, the impact continues to grow. 

Joel and our runners got a much-needed morale boost when they passed Shooting Star staff, volunteers and supported families who were stationed at our two cheer points at Tower Bridge and Embankment. They were armed with pom-poms, wrist bells, whistles and Shooting Star signage as they yelled words of encouragement to keep spirit levels high and drive motivation.

One of our runners, Nikesh, said running past our cheer points was a highlight, along with seeing his family along the route, stating the experience was “absolutely amazing.”

“It’s been awesome running for Team Shooting Star,” said Nikesh. “The team has been unreal all the way through. The level of support Shooting Star has given me is out of this world; I’ve absolutely loved it.

“The work Shooting Star does as a charity is just phenomenal. To be fair, a lot of these smaller charities, like Shooting Star, can’t survive without our support, so I’d absolutely run it for you again if I had the chance. I’d highly recommend it to anyone who decides to run.”

Hannah Bateman, Shooting Star’s Challenge Events Fundraiser, ran the marathon and said, “WOW. What an incredible day. I have been reflecting on so many magical moments that I will treasure forever.”

“I was also lucky enough to take part in the marathon alongside the team and it was truly the best day ever. I can now wholeheartedly say, from experience, how incredibly special and momentous the Shooting Star cheer points are! As you approach, you are met with pure joy and excitement on the faces of volunteers, staff, friends, and family. It gives you such an overwhelming boost of adrenaline and belief in yourself, which carries you right through to the finish line. I was so proud to be running for Shooting Star Children’s Hospices.”

Following the race, the runners were treated to a special thank-you reception at Brewdog in Waterloo, where they were greeted by family, friends and Shooting Star Children’s Hospices staff and volunteers with huge congratulations and a well-deserved drink or two. 

Alexa Dizon, Shooting Star’s Challenge Events Lead, said, “Our #TeamShootingStar London Marathon runners are unbelievably inspiring, and we couldn’t be prouder of them for taking on such a tough event!”

“The atmosphere in London on Marathon Day is electric, with this year being no exception. Our fabulous volunteers were cheering the team on and there were nothing but smiles at Brewdog. Raising such an amazing amount of money for Shooting Star Children’s Hospices will make such a huge difference to children with life-limiting conditions and their families in making every moment count.” 

If you’ve been inspired by the Shooting Star Children’s Hospices London Marathon team and would like to take part in next year’s event to raise money for your local children’s hospice charity, you can enter the ballot or register your interest in a charity place here.