Hardest Geezer: Who is the man completing run spanning across the entirety of Africa?

Russ Cook has been running for 350 days and is due to finish his mammoth marathon in Tunisia on Sunday

Known as the "Hardest Geezer", Russ Cook is set to finish running the entire length of Africa, having started his epic journey nearly one year ago.

Starting at the southern tip of South Africa on April 22, 2023, Russ Cook, is expected to finish his 9,000 mile route through 16 countries on Sunday.

His project, titled Project Africa, will see him become the first person to complete such a feat – the equivalent of over 360 marathons.

"Here we go. Crossed the border from Algeria to Tunisia last night marking the 16th and final country of the mission. Final push," he tweeted on Friday as he neared the end of his journey.

Mr Cook's mission was hanging in the balance earlier this year, as he had a "bit of a problem" getting a visa to pass through Algeria.

He mentioned a "misunderstanding with the Algerian police", and was warned by the Foreign Office against travelling through the North African nation due to safety concerns.

Nonetheless, he is back on track and on the last leg of his journey, which has already seen him raise over half a million pounds for two charities.

It is not the first time that Cook has faced challenges outside of the colossal run he is undertaking. Last year, the runner had to take a brief pause after he and his team had their phones, passports, cameras and cash stolen at gunpoint in Anglola.

Who is Russ Cook aka Hardest Geezer?

Last year, Russ Cook, otherwise known as Hardest Geezer, set out to run the entire length of Africa - a feat he is just days away from completing.

The 27-year-old from Worthing in West Sussex will be the first person to run from the southernmost point of Africa to Tunisia.

Where is he running and when will he be finished?

If Cook reaches his goal, the entire challenge across the continent will have taken him 352 days and he will have run the equivalent of 380 marathons in that time.

He had originally set out to complete 360 marathons in 240 days, but faced with numerous challenges, such as illness, robbery and visa issues, he extended the timescale.

By the time he has finished in Tunisia, he will have run through 16 countries on the west side of Africa.

They include; South Africa, Namibia, Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Senegal, Mauritania, Algeria and Tunisia.

Why is he running?

As an avid fan of extreme challenges Cook wants to inspire others to "throw everything and the kitchen sink at life".

Russ Cook, who is an adventure running guide at The Running Charity, said the idea of the challenge came about after he ran from Asia to London in 2019 solo and unassisted.

That feat saw him complete 71 marathons in 66 days through 11 countries, including Turkey and Germany.

He has also been raising money for two charities, The Running Charity and Sandblast. At the time of writing, he has raised £573,380.

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