Sonia O’Sullivan is supporting the battle against ovarian cancer again this year by participating in an upcoming run to raise funds for the cause.
O’Sullivan, 42, will take part in the Emer Casey Fun Run in Melbourne on May 27, prior to returning home to Ireland in time for the Olympics.
The mum-of-two is due to carry the Olympic torch in Dublin on June 6, before she flies to London to begin her duties as Chef de Mission at this year’s games.
O’Sullivan says that taking part in the Fun Run will be a great way to bid goodbye to her adopted home of Australia before she returns to her home country for several months.
The Cork born athlete became an Australian citizen in 2006 and now divides her time between Melbourne and Ireland. The Emer Casey Fun Run commemorates a 28-year-old Youghal solicitor who died of ovarian cancer in 2006 and raises funds to support Melbourne’s Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.
A former 5,000m World Champion and Olympic silver medalist, O’Sullivan’s involvement with The Emer Casey Foundation began in Ireland when she ran in the Youghal fun run some years ago.
“It’s my last run before I head over for the Olympics so I’m looking forward to it,” O’Sullivan told the Irish Echo.
“My younger daughter Sophie and I will be heading to Ireland the following week.
“These days I just run to keep fit so I’m kind of whatever about the training.
“I’ve been doing different things instead. I’ve been doing some swimming and cycling so that keeps me fit anaerobically. I can’t run so fast anymore.
“Things like the charity events. It gives me something to look forward to and you have a bit of a goal and a target as well.
“I just use that as a way for me to stay fit and also to help out a good cause.
“The first one I did was in Youghal in County Cork and then the past three years I’ve done the one in Melbourne,” she added.
The Olympic medalist urges those who may have recently moved to Melbourne from Ireland to come along and join in the festivities on the day.
“I’d like to encourage any Irish people in Melbourne to come and run with us,” she explained.
“We’ve been out to Gaelic Park in Melbourne and we’ve spoken to a few of them there so we’re hoping they’re going to come along.
“There’s always a bit of good Irish fun and we like to share that with the Aussies,” she laughed.
This is the fifth year of the annual Emer Casey Fun Run, which will take place at Clayton Campus, Monash University.
Registration begins at 8.30am with a 10.00am start for 10km and 10.15am start for 5km .
Last year over $25,000 was raised to support the Peter Mac Foundation VBCRC Cancer Genetics Program and the Kathleen Cunningham Foundation Consortium both of which focus on research into Familial Breast and Ovarian Cancer.
For more information about the Emer Casey Fun Run and to register, visit http://www.emercaseyrunmelbourne.com/.