Billy’s on the road to NYC
Ingkerreke Commercial Site Foreman Billy Tilmouth has been selected to run in the New York City Marathon in November as part of the Indigenous Marathon Project (IMP). A group of 12 participants were selected from try-outs conducted in 19 locations around Australia in remote, regional and city centres.
The IMP is a program of the Indigenous Marathon Foundation, a not‐for‐profit Foundation established by Rob de Castella. Each year IMP selects a squad of 12 young Indigenous men and women, to train for the New York City Marathon in November, complete a compulsory education component – a Certificate III in Fitness, media training and coaching accreditation – and through their achievements celebrate Indigenous resilience and success.
The squad will participate in four short camps throughout 2017, the first of which will be held in Canberra from May 24-29. Each member of the squad must also complete a compulsory Cert IV in Community Recreation, Run Coaching qualification and CPR & First Aid Certificate, which they must pass in order to be eligible to run the Marathon.
While the squad have just six months to train for one of the world’s most iconic runs, the selection process was not about choosing athletes, but focused on selecting individuals who were motivated and driven by a sense of purpose, who will use their achievements and knowledge to drive change in their communities.
Indigenous Marathon Project head coach Adrian Dodson-Shaw selected the six men and six women who will form the IMP squad for 2017.
Adrian was impressed by the calibre of the applicants, who demonstrated their commitment and desire to be part of the life-changing project, and said while it was encouraging to meet so many inspiring, young Indigenous men and women, it also made the selection process even tougher.
“Training for the marathon is just the first step on a long journey,” Adrian said.
“These 12 men and women all demonstrated something to me: a refusal to accept the status quo and a desire to make things better for Indigenous people. They know that this is a real and valuable opportunity for them to nurture their leadership skills, to change things for themselves, their families, and their whole community.”