Today (7 September 2015), The 2016 Alliance Trust Cateran Yomp is proud to announce their latest Ambassador as the inspirational Scottish Paralympic powerlifter Micky Yule @MickyYule9.

Micky is currently in training for the ‘Rio 2016 Paralympic Games’, due to travel to Brazil in just 3 days time with the British Paralympics Association to mark the 1 year countdown to the games. (7-18 Sep 2016)

As a member of Team GB, Musselburgh born Micky has his sights set firmly on competing in the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro next summer. Despite a rigorous training schedule ahead, Micky has committed to making a special trip to Blairgowrie before Brazil over the weekend of 11-12 June in support of the 2016 Cateran Yomp. The Yomp is an annual endurance event around Scotland’s historic walking trail to raise vital funds for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity.

This is because Micky is an athlete for whom ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, the National Charity of the British Army, is a cause with profound personal resonance. Five years ago, the 36-year-old former Royal Engineer, stepped on a pressure-plate IED in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, and saw his life changed forever. One leg was amputated by the blast, the other while undergoing over 40 surgeries that followed.

Within 12 months he’d walked down the aisle on full length prosthetic legs to marry his partner Jody and taken up para-powerlifting. Micky needed weights and other equipment to train at home and The Soldiers’ Charity supported him through grants for the purchase of this kit and other pieces of vital equipment.

After narrowly missing out on a medal in Glasgow’s 2014 Commonwealth Games, Micky led Britain’s Powerlifting Team in the inaugural Invictus Games in London, winning a coveted Gold medal for the winning British Armed Forces Team. The Invictus Team’s achievements received the Helen Rollason Award for Overcoming Adversity at the 2015 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards.

Now training hard to push 195kg at 65kg bodyweight in order to qualify before Feb 2016, Micky says: “I am well aware that as a paralympian and a powerlifter I am in a minority sport and that sponsorship is very hard to come by, so the belief that Alliance Trust has shown in me by sponsoring my training programme as I work towards Rio and asking me to be the latest Cateran Yomp Ambassador is an enormous privilege.

“Its going to be a busy 10 months but I’m really looking forward to my new Ambassador duties, visiting Blairgowrie next Summer where the Yomp starts and ends and cheering on the fundraisers committed to pushing themselves to the limits and raising money for The Soldiers’ Charity.”

“I am now lifting 30kgs – 40kgs more than I did as an Army power-lifter. The sports scientists estimate that I will have to lift 200-203 kg to secure a top 5 finish in Rio and hopefully a medal. My body weight is 65 kilograms so I’m looking to bench press three times my body weight. It’s a very historic weight if you are into benchpress. You could probably count the number of people who have lifted it at my body weight on your thumbs.”

Katherine Garrett-Cox, CEO of Alliance Trust said “The Cateran Yomp is a fundraiser renowned for its ability to be both fun and serious, a physical challenge and a way for people to enjoy Scotland’s great outdoors in support of a truly worthy cause. Micky’s focus and resilience to achieve his goals is truly inspiring and it means a great deal to all of us involved with this fantastic event that we have Micky as our 2016 Ambassador.”

Major General Martin Rutledge, Chief Executive, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity said “We are delighted to confirm Micky as The Cateran Yomp Ambassador for 2016. As a former soldier, who sustained his injuries on active service, Micky is an athlete who has both benefitted from our support and also understands our objectives as a charity that helps soldiers, veterans and their families. Micky Yule is an inspiration to all and we are delighted to support him on his quest for gold in Rio.”

This annual event has raised a grand total of £1.8 million for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity and the Alliance Trust Foundation, which directs funding to community groups, local charities and voluntary organisations, nominated and voted for by Alliance Trust staff.

Registration is now open for anyone who wants to take on the 2016 Alliance Trust Cateran Yomp 11-12 June 2016. www.soldierscharity.org/yomp

Follow Micky Yule’s Road to Rio @MickyYule9 www.rio2016.com

ENDS

For more information, images or comment, contact Jennie Patterson

Tel: 07773 849586 e-mail jennie@patterpr.com

Notes to Editors

The Cateran Yomp: Previous Cateran Yomp Ambassadors have included rugby player Rob Wainwright and mountaineer Polly Murray. In 2015, 600 competitors including 217 serving soldiers and veterans signed up to trek 22 miles, 36.5 miles or the full leg-sapping 54 miles around Scotland’s historic Cateran Trail in just 24 hours, a trail the Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust would recommend taking five days to complete. This epic adventure challenge will push you to your limits both mentally and physically. Take on the best, take on the Yomp.

ABF The Soldiers’ Charity – the British Army’s National Charity since 1944 – supports thousands of soldiers, veterans and their immediate families each year. The charity makes financial grants to individuals in times of need and specialist charities supporting the wider Army family. The need for support continues to grow. Visit www.soldierscharity.org

Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/soldierscharity and follow us on Twitter: @soldierscharity

Alliance Trust PLC was founded in 1888 and has grown to become one of the UK’s largest generalist investment trust by market value.  As of January 2015, Alliance Trust had total assets of £3.4bn, which includes its subsidiaries Alliance Trust Savings and Alliance Trust Investments.

Alliance Trust Foundation

As part of our vision of Investing for Generations, the Alliance Trust Foundation supports local charities and community organisations through volunteering and fundraising, with a particular focus on humanitarian organisations.  The beneficiaries are recommended and nominated by Alliance Trust staff.