Crawley Wasps trio tackle triathlon with a difference for charity

Three football team-mates and work colleagues are bidding to raise £3,000 for charity by climbing Mount Everest, lifting ten African elephants and cycling as far as possible – all in 24 hours.

Friday, 26th March 2021, 9:19 am
Updated Friday, 26th March 2021, 9:22 am
Michelle Ward (left), Faye Rabson (centre) and Rachel Palmer (right) are taking on the 24-hour ‘Make or Break Challenge’ at Cottesmore Hotel, Golf and Country Club. Pictures courtesy of Andrew Raeburn

It is a triathlon with a difference for Michelle Ward, Faye Rabson and Rachel Palmer, as it will happen virtually, at their workplace, Cottesmore Hotel, Golf and Country Club in Pease Pottage.

In the Make or Break Challenge, the trio will use a step machine to climb 8,848 metres, the height of Everest, between them; a 15kg barbell to lift a combined 50,000kg, the equivalent of ten elephants; and a spin bike which will be in operation throughout.

It will start at 12pm on Good Friday (April 2) and end at 12pm on Easter Saturday (April 3), and aims to raise £1,500 each for St Catherine’s Hospice and Olive Tree Cancer Support Centre.

Faye Rabson preparing for the Make or Break Challenge

Michelle, 33, from Horsham, planted the seed for the challenge just before Christmas. She said: “It’s been a really tough year for charities and I thought it’d be nice to do something.

“I was looking at the StairMaster and how many flights we’d have to do to get up Mount Everest. I pitched it to the girls and then Rach turned it into a bit of a triathlon with Faye modifying it.”

Cottesmore general manager Johnny Porter said: “It shows a real level of ingenuity that they’re creating a daunting but inspiring challenge and one I can fully support.”

The trio, who have played football together for Crawley Wasps in the FA Women’s National League, upped their training gradually in recent weeks, culminating in 12-hour sessions.

Michelle Ward building up strength for the Make or Break Challenge

Faye, 32, from Crawley, health club manager and personal trainer at Cottesmore, said: “I have really early morning clients and sometimes classes in the evening, so it’s generally hard to fit time in. But I’ve been doing three big sessions a week and my own strength sessions.”

Rachel, 27, from Crawley, also a PT at Cottesmore, added: “I’m running twice a week, doing four strength-based sessions and a football fitness session on a Sunday.”

The first step towards easing lockdown means people will be able to come down and cheer them on – with all profits going to the charities.

To support them, visit and search ‘Make or Break Challenge’.