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Mum of daughter with rare muscular dystrophy will kick off this year’s Oxford Town and Gown race

29 April 2022

Robin Ward will sound the horn to set runners off for our Oxford Town and Gown race

This weekend, on Sunday 8 May, up to 5,000 runners will be racing in the streets of Oxford for the 40th anniversary of Muscular Dystrophy UK’s Oxford Town and Gown 2022. Participants will be taking part in the Junior 3k, Wheelchair race and mass 10k run.

Robin Ward, from Berkshire, will be doing us the honour of starting our Oxford Town and Gown 2022 event. Robin will be running the race to raise awareness of her daughter Lucy’s extremely rare condition as a manifesting carrier of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. 

Duchenne muscular dystrophy primarily affects males, but it can also affect females.

Robin explains:

“Women are often underdiagnosed with this condition because it’s so rare, so information from MDUK has been a lifeline from the day Lucy received her diagnosis.”

Lucy was diagnosed with the condition when she was 13-years-old following Robin’s concerns about Lucy’s mobility. After several visits to the GP and multiple hospitals, doctors thought Lucy might have limb girdle muscular dystrophy.

Even though she had all the symptoms of being a manifesting carrier of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, doctors weren’t so sure as it’s very rare. Within three weeks and many tests, they had confirmation of her diagnosis.

Robin wants to raise awareness on how the muscle-wasting condition can affect women and girls, and to advocate for more research into treatments and find a cure. 

“Research is the only way that treatments and cures are going to be discovered. Taking part in events like this is a crucial part of this. By starting this race, my goal is to fundraise to find effective treatments and a cure,” said Robin.  

Our Oxford Town and Gown is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year and close to 5,000 runners are expected to taking part to raise essential funds. 

Councillor Mark Lygo, Lord Mayor of Oxford, is running in this year’s race and said:

“Fundraising has understandably been difficult for charities since the pandemic. My thanks and congratulations go to Muscular Dystrophy UK for organising this 40th-year event, and of course to all of the runners who will make this year’s Town and Gown a success.”

Jessie Keighley, our Event Project Manager, said:

“Now in its 40th year, the Oxford Town and Gown Race has raised over £3,000,000 for people living with muscle-wasting conditions. Thank you to all our runners for this amazing contribution, and especially to Robin for being our 2022 race starter.”

Show Robin your support and donate to her Sports Giving page. Or be inspired and sign up to one of our fundraising running events today.

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