Hundreds gather at Headingley to wave Kevin Sinfield off on his fourth challenge for MND charities

PA - setting off 1 Dec
Sinfield set off from Headingley Stadium and will complete the first day of his challenge in York Credit: PA

Rugby League legend Kevin Sinfield has set off on his latest fundraising challenge to raise money to support motor neurone disease (MND) charities.

Inspired by his former Leeds Rhinos teammate Rob Burrow, the 7 in 7 in 7 Challenge will see Sinfield, 43, run an ultra-marathon every day for seven days in seven cities.

Hundreds of people, including Burrow and his wife Lindsey, were at the starting line at Headingley Stadium in Leeds this morning.

Rob and Lindsey Burrow were at the starting line in Headingley on Friday Credit: PA

Speaking before setting off, Sinfield described having Burrow at the beginning as a "massive inspiration".

He said: "[They're] the reason we're here and what we're doing and also the MND community.

"[It's] a beautiful community that's been ravaged for decades and finally getting the support that they need."

He added: "That comes from everybody who has supported in some small way. Everybody who is now aware of what this disease does and that makes such a difference to the community."

Sinfield, who is from Oldham, has taken on a series of endurance events since Burrow was diagnosed with MND in 2019.

The pair have so far raised more than £8m for MND causes since 2020.

Sinfield's latest challenge is aiming to raise £777,777.

The number seven features heavily in Sinfield's fundraising, in honour of the number Burrow sported during his career.

He is due to complete the first day in York in icy conditions and said "it's freezing but we'll make it work."

Each run will consist of a marathon distance (26.2 miles), plus an extra mile to signify the extra mile people can all go to help  their  friends in tough times.

Huge crowds are expected along the route which will take the team to Cardiff, Birmingham, Edinburgh and Dublin before finishing at Twickenham Stadium in London on 7 December.

Sinfield said the interactions with the public and members of the MND community are what makes the challenges "so special."

He said: "They might be fleeting but that smile and a wave makes such a difference."

More information about the full route can be found here.

Burrow and Sinfield completed the Leeds Marathon together in May 2023. Credit: PA

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