A Daventry woman is the youngest female entrant in with a chance of completing a hat-trick of endurance challenges when she takes part in a charity swim in London's Serpentine.
Lauren Barker, 21, has already crossed the Virgin Money London Marathon finish line, cycled the length of the 100-mile Prudential RideLondon-Surrey, and must now swim two miles in the Serpentine on September 16 to complete the London Classics challenge.
All successful competitors will receive a specially-designed London Classics medal engraved with the words: Et ego Londinium vici (“I too have conquered London”) and will be listed in the London Classics Hall of Fame.
Lauren, a University of Hertfordshire sports therapist student who has just finished a year with Wasps Rugby Club, said: “I’ve always been a strong swimmer, so I always thought Swim Serpentine would be a good event. The thought of the London Classics spurred me on to sign up – and the medal looks awesome.”
Despite being a strong swimmer thanks to her parents encouraging her to learn to do so, Lauren had never taken to open water before beginning her training.
Her family have always been keen to take on a challenge as evidenced by Lauren's grandmother Jennifer, who inspired her granddaughter to run this year's London Marathon having completed it herself at the age of 81.
Lauren has chosen to raise money for and promote the work of the charity Tommy's, fund research into miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth, and provide pregnancy health information to parents.
"This is a charity close to my heart as one of my Aunt's lost two babies during her pregnancies," wrote Lauren on her fundraising page.
"It is hard to believe that in this day and age, up to one in four women will lose a baby during pregnancy or birth.
"Tommy's believes every baby deserves the best start in life and are committed to funding medical research and providing information to help more mums and dads through a healthy pregnancy and birth."