NEW YORK, Jan 29 (LPC) - For the past seven months Christopher Yanney has run in the rain and snow, trained with the thermostat set to 85 degrees, and hit the pavement as early as 1 am in preparation for the 183.4 miles he will face over the course of seven days in February.
The co-founder of investment firm CKC Capital is set to participate in the World Marathon Challenge, a grueling test of strength where competitors complete seven marathons on seven continents in seven days. Participants are set to kick-off the first race in Antarctica on February 6.
The former head of high-yield trading at Barclays, Morgan Stanley and Citigroup, Yanney has wanted to take part in the race for several years and in 2020 is finally getting his shot.
“I really enjoy running,” he said. “For me, more than anything, it’s a big challenge and I really enjoy tackling the challenge.”
Click here for infographic: tmsnrt.rs/2Gy0lpe
Yanney founded CKC Capital with KC Baer after the pair worked together at Bank of America, Barclays and Citigroup. The firm, which is approaching US$500m in assets under management, invests across credit markets including leveraged loans, high-yield bonds, investment-grade bonds and distressed debt.
“It’s pretty impressive – his dedication to the training has been something to see,” said Baer who previously ran the Staten Island Half Marathon with Yanney. “He’s always been a very good runner and he’s always trained but never like this. I think he will be pleasantly surprised with how well he does.”
A college football player at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Yanney completed his first marathon in Boston in 1997, and was hooked. He estimates he has run more than 30 marathons, a slew of ultramarathons including 85 miles in 24 hours, and the ‘Dopey Challenge’ at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida where competitors complete a 5K – 3.1 miles – a 10K – 6.2 miles – a half marathon and a marathon over the course of four days.
He began training “aggressively” for this latest challenge in June, logging about 1,200 training miles and wearing out six pairs of Hoka One One running sneakers. He fits in training before and after work in all weather conditions to prepare for what he may encounter as he spans the globe.
The race kicks off in Novolazarevskaya (Novo), Antarctica, which registered a daily low of 11 degrees Fahrenheit Tuesday. Yanney and the other runners will then head to Cape Town, South Africa followed by Perth, Australia, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, then onto Madrid, Spain, Fortaleza, Brazil, which had a high of 85 degrees Fahrenheit Tuesday, and finally to South Beach Miami, Florida where the journey ends.
Yanney is running in support of two charities – the African Wildlife Foundation, an international conservation organization focused on Africa’s wildlife and wild lands, and the Villanova Soccer Academy, a soccer club in Villanova, Pennsylvania that offers children, regardless of means, an opportunity to play by providing scholarships for equipment, travel and dues. He has raised more than US$15,200 as of Tuesday, which will be split between the two organizations.
After he finishes his final race in Miami, Yanney plans to head right back to the office, where Baer and the CKC team have been supportive of his training, which he admits has been daunting at times.
But for now, he is just excited for the challenge.
“I really just go run and try to smile as much as I can and enjoy it because I really love it,” Yanney said. “When I cross the starting line I try to forget about everything else and really just enjoy being out there. I think that’s why I am able to tackle a lot of distance a lot of times because when you love something you just keep doing it.”
Reporting by Kristen Haunss; Editing By Jon Methven