December 9 2013 Latest news:
By Richard Goss and Laurence Cawley
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
A POLICEMAN who normally pounds the beat in a quiet Suffolk market town will find himself surrounded by armed guards when he faces his biggest challenge yet – a punishing race in a city that has become the murder capital of the world.
Organisers of the gruelling Decaman event in Monterrey, Mexico in October, are stepping up security as rival drugs gangs wage an escalating bloody war that has claimed more than a thousand lives.
Last month 49 headless corpses were found on the outskirts of the city in the latest chapter of violence that the authorities seems powerless to stem.
But Pc Simon Bourne, from Bury St Edmunds, shrugged off the dangers saying he is concentrating on preparing for the extreme challenge – in which he will have to swim 24 miles, run 262 miles and cycle 1,120 miles (1,800 kilometres) in a target time of just eight days
That is the equivalent of a cross-Channel swim, running from London to Lands End and cycling to Gibraltar.
Pc Bourne, 47, is currently combining his job as a frontline police officer stationed in Haverhill with his punishing training regime.
He runs the equivalent of a marathon to work and the same 26 miles home – and a 200-mile bike ride or a six-mile river swim are just parts of his demanding physical schedule.
He said: “I am not worried about the dangers away from the racing – I will be totally focused on what I have to do.
“Decaman is the ultimate physical challenge but I have been training and building up to this moment for the last seven years.
“A lot of people wanted to enter this event from all round the world – but when it came down to it only nine entries have been accepted.
“Many athletes have been frightened off by the sheer demands such a competition puts on the mind as well as the body.
“To stand a chance of winning, I will have to be competing for 22 out of 24 hours every day so there comes a stage when it becomes purely a mental battle.
“The biggest challenge in the Olympics is the triathlon which is a 1,500 metre swim, a 40km bike race and a 10km run – that sounds like an ordinary training session for an ultra-athlete.”