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Folk urged to get involved in New Year MND fundraising exercise challenge

Doddie Weir was diagnosed with MND in 2017.

Scotland’s rugby stars are calling on the people of Orkney to join them in a mass participation fundraising exercise challenge.

The Doddie Aid Challenge is raising money for My Name’5 Doddie Foundation and kicks off on January 1, running until the start of the Six Nations Championship on February 6.

The foundation was founded by former Scotland International and Lion, Doddie Weir, in 2017 to fund research for a cure for Motor Neuron Disease (MND) following his diagnosis with the devastating disease.

The brainchild of Doddie Weir’s former Scotland and British & Irish Lions teammate, Rob Wainwright, the challenge will dust off rugby’s old Scottish inter-district championship and its five teams resurrected.

To get involved, potential participants should go to www.doddieaid.com to find out how to join their chosen district and also get a free team snood. All exercise miles should then be recorded via a campaign-specific app from January 1.

Any form of exercise counts towards a district’s total on the leaderboard, from running to rollerblading, cycling to skiing or just adding up daily steps.

Throughout the event, the captains of each district will be busy signing other high-profile stars in a bid to boost their team’s efforts. Come February 6, the team which has logged the most collective miles will be crowned Doddie Aid Inter-District Champion.

Mr Wainwright said: “Doddie Aid is an opportunity to burn off all that festive excess while supporting Doddie and his foundation in its efforts to find effective treatments for MND.

“As with anything involving Doddie, it has to be fun, and the management teams for the five districts are already playing dirty in their recruitment efforts.

“The eligibility rules have already courted controversy with captains attempting to poach stars from other districts.

“So you can tell the Exiles that Geraint Thomas is signing for the North & Midlands whatever his agent says to the contrary!”

Doddie Weir added: “What better way to start 2021? The inter-district championship was a tremendous and highly competitive tournament; reigniting these tribal rivalries is a fantastic idea and I hope you all get involved.”

For further information about the foundation visit www.myname5doddie.co.uk