Four members of a Smiths family from Salisbury and Cornwall will be taking on 300 kilometres along the River Wye using paddle boards, with the aim of completing it in the shortest time possible. More importantly, they hope to raise awareness of 22q11 deletion syndrome and money for the charity, Max Appeal.

Husband and wife, Tracy and Daniel, along with Daniel’s brother, Ben, and his wife, Vicki, begin their challenge at 5.30am on Saturday, August 24th on the River Wye at Hereford. The team’s finish line is in Ross-on-Wye.

Tracy told the Ross Gazette that the team hope to cover the 42miles in around 12 hours, before getting off at Symonds Yat and travelling back to their accommodation for a bite to eat and a snooze.

The paddle boarding crew will continue this for four consecutive days.

On the fifth day, which Tracy said will hopefully be their last day of the challenge, they will complete the remaining mileage to take them to the 300k total.

Tracy said: “We have a few friends and fellow paddle boarders joining us for our last run on this day and people at the end to support us and cheer us on at the end which will be the get out point just past Ross-on-Wye Rowing Club.”

Ben and Vicki’s son, Jacob, was diagnosed with DiGeorge syndrome, also known as 22q11 deletion, when he was six months old.

Tracy told the Ross Gazette: “We’re all just ordinary people so training has been tough on our own. We have had sponsors from Quroc who gave us two paddle boards to use for the challenge which was fantastic and a sponsor from Mat Oloughlin from Composite Doors 2 You who paid for our accommodation while we are doing our challenge which was brilliant!”

The family have raised more than £2000 so far, and are appealing to residents to support them on their journey. You can share their progress on their social media Sup Smith pages, donate to their cause, or join them to celebrate at the finish line around midday on Wednesday, August 28th.See the full story in this week’s edition of the Ross Gazette, or subscribe to our online edition here