ÖTILLÖ - The island to island race
In September 2015, two Michael Matthews Foundation teams successfully competed in ÖTILLÖ, the SwimRun endurance event held annually in Sweden’s Stockholm archipelago. In 2002, after a late night in the bar, the owner of Utö Värdshus, the hotel which is now the finish line of ÖtillÖ, challenged a number of friends to compete in a hastily-designed swimming and running race between the islands in the archipelago.
The next morning, two teams of two set out, the only rule being that they had to pass visit three different restaurants on the islands between the start and the finish. It took them more than 24 hours to complete, and they were too exhausted to celebrate.
In 2006, an organised race was built around the original challenge, but without the restaurant stops. It was to become one of the toughest one-day endurance races in the world. Teams of two race together from island to island (Ö till Ö). The teams swim between the 26 islands and run over them.
The total distance is 75 kilometres, of which 10 km are open-water swimming and 65 km are trail-running. The two MMF teams completed the race in 13 hours 4 minutes, a wonderful
In every case, none of the costs associated with fund raising activities themselves have fallen on the Charity, having been borne in full by the fundraisers themselves and/or members of Michael’s family. Every penny raised benefits directly the young people whom MMF supports. This has been a guiding principle of the Foundation from the start.