A weather buff is hoping the sun will be shining and the wind will be behind him when he comes to Forres to take part in a gruelling race next month.
Windy Wilson, who is well-known for his straight-talking, off-beat (and sometimes sweary!) weather reports through Facebook, has amassed more than 300,000 followers on his social media accounts, despite maintaining a level of anonymity. He refers to his wife as Gusty and his 15-year-old son as ‘Young Windy’ and they live in Perthshire.
Windy will run 50 kilometres on a breathtaking route along the coast from Forres to Cullen in the Moray Coast Trail Ultra, to raise money for charities close to his heart. It’s the first of four ultra runs based around the Moray Way.
He will follow the route of the Moray Coast Trail, which goes through Findhorn, Hopeman, Lossiemouth, Spey Bay, Buckie and finally Cullen.
The event has been set up by Forres man Kyle Greig, who grew up in Forres and has run ultras all over the world.
Windy said: “As a long distance endurance runner you always want to push yourself to the max. I’ve done two big marathons, in London & Berlin, and a 50k ultra (31 miles). So this is the next progressive step, and for my charity work, and the fundraising I do.”
Despite having Type 2 Diabetes, and raises funds for several charities. His total raised to date over seven years of fundraising is just over £125,000.
He added: “I’m diabetic so my main charity is Diabetes UK. I’m also raising money for CHAS (Children’s Hospices across Scotland). In the past I’ve raised money for Prostate Cancer UK; the RNLI; the SCAA; SAMH and loads of other we ones.”
His target for this event is £25,000 and he’s already raised £10,000 before the race starts, and all the money raised will go to the British Heart Foundation Scotland.
The British Heart Foundation has helped halve the number of people dying from heart and circulatory disease in the UK but sadly every day hundreds of people lose their lives.
Windy and Gusty’s son had a congenital heart defect when he was born called Atrial Septal Defect (hole in the heart) which was only found by chance in 2019.
He explained: “After 18 agonising months of tests and check-ups we finally got the date for surgery, Monday 21 December (ironically the shortest day, but it was anything but).
“He was admitted on Sunday 20 December and discharged on Christmas Eve. Six hours in surgery before being moved up to PICU (paediatric intensive care unit) where he spent another 18 hours, before being moved through to the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow .
“Being discharged on Christmas Eve was the best Christmas present me and Gusty have ever had, and will ever likely have. Five months after the op, we take every day one day at a time, working on his fitness, cardio and diet.”
Beautiful part of the country
Windy has a great following in Moray. He referred to it as the ‘north-east riviera’ when it was enjoying a particularly good stretch of benign weather. However, he has never visited the area.
“I’m led to believe it is a beautiful part of the country,” he said.
Next month, he will get to sample it for real.
Windy says he got ‘into weather’ about 11 years ago as a bit of a laugh.
“I’ve no expertise really, as in qualifications, but I have a good knack of interpreting the charts and putting my unorthodox spin on it. I do get a bit sweary at times as well. A spade is a spade. You either hate me or love me, but my haters don’t know the real me.
If you want to support Windy’s fundraising run, please justgiving.com/youngwindy. You can also donate by TEXT as well. Just send HEARTWARRIOR5 (to donate £5) or HEARTWARRIOR10 (to donate £10) to 70507 (usual T&C’s apply).
Under current guidelines no spectators are permitted, however the Moray Coast Trail is a public right of way, so be sensible, stay safe and support this amazing fundraising bid.
Are you running the Ultra? Please let us know, we’d love to follow your progress?
Windy’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/windywilson.weather.roads