Orange gnome heads day but Sam’s tiger takes junior stripes

thisisoxfordshire: Samuel Couchman Samuel Couchman

THEY ran in their thousands, but two competitors really stood out from the crowd during last weekend’s Town and Gown event.

Samuel Couchman, 13, and Adam Smith have been picked by the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign as the winners of its fancy dress competition.

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Mr Smith, 41, above, wore a giant orange gnome hat while Samuel came dressed in a tiger costume.

The charity held its 33rd 10k race through the streets of Oxford on Sunday and it is tipped to break its fundraising record to reach £150,000.

It raises money for research into the muscle-wasting condition and the event is backed by the Oxford Mail.

More than 3,200 people took part, with 157 children participating in the 3k junior race.

Teams from Oxford University colleges also took part, with the 58 runners from Brasenose College raising more than £3,100 so far.

The next biggest University college teams were St Hugh’s College, which had 41 runners, Merton College with 39 members and 29 from Jesus College.

TV personality Christine Hamilton kicked off proceedings, which started in University Park, by counting down ahead of the race.

There are many different types of muscular dystrophy each affecting different muscles.

It can either be inherited, or occur randomly where there is no family history, but most conditions are progressive, causing the muscles to gradually weaken over time.

The severity of the different types and how they affect individuals varies from person to person.

Race organiser Toya Champ said: “It was great to see the streets lined with orange on Sunday and there were some fantastic costumes on show.

“Spectators may have spotted Minnie Mouse, a mermaid, a troop of Quidditch players on their brooms, a chicken and a whoopee cushion running past.

“By wearing orange, runners showed their support for the hundreds of families in Oxfordshire who are affected by muscle-wasting conditions.”

Samuel, from Oxford, was the winner of the junior run.

Ms Champ said: “We think Samuel’s costume is Grrrrreat!”

Of Mr Smith, from High Street, Milton-under-Wychwood, she added: “Adam has proved that you don’t need to don an elaborate costume to stand out from the crowd. His cheeky orange gnome hat could be seen above the crowds wherever he went.”

They will both receive the Town and Gown Crown trophy.

For the results of the race and more pictures go to http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/pictures/picture_galleries/town_and_gown_2014/

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