EASTCHESTER, N.Y. – A pair of Eastchester residents have been hard at work training for a good cause, as they prepare to enter the RBC Decathlon, which benefits children’s cancer research.
The RBC Decathlon is an annual event, geared towards members of the financial community who guarantee to raise a minimum of $3,000 from donors. Last year, 150 participants raised nearly $1.5 million that will benefit Memorial Sloan Kettering children’s cancer research.
Tuckahoe resident David Carraturo and Bronxville-native Andrew Hogue have been hard at work, hitting the pavement as part of both their training and fund-raising campaigns.
Carraturo, who will participate for the fourth time, has raised more than $10,000 for charity since he first entered the decathlon. As of Tuesday, May 27, he is less than $1,000 away from his goal, courtesy of friends and family. Donations can be made here until the June 22 event.
“My donations have come 100 percent from family and friends. I am so proud of their support and humbled by their encouragement,” he said. “The breadth of people (donating) has expanded, which I’m excited about. This means that the message about the RBC Decathlon is spreading.”
At the decathlon, competitors of all age and experience levels compete in 10 events, including two long-distance runs, a sprint, agility drills, weight lifting and other events that could be seen in a decathlon or at the NFL Combine.
The RBC Decathlon is a very personal competition for Carraturo, who lost his father to pancreatic cancer in 1979 and his mother three years ago.
“A few months after my mother died in 2011, I was looking for a cause to get involved in and I read an article about the decathlon he said. “As a former high school quarterback and avid weight lifter, I was immediately hooked on the event.”
Last year, Hogue won the over-40 title and the 800-meter race with a time of 2:11. Carraturo was fourth in his age group, and won the bench-press overall with 42 reps at 175 pounds.
Both Carraturo and Hogue finished with better overall scores last year than former Olympian Dan O’Brien, who used his notoriety to raise more than $100,000. This year, Carraturo has high hopes for his scores and is betting on himself by asking donors to make “performance-based contributions,” that will vary based on how he scores.
“In these tough economic times, the $3,000 donation threshold is tough,” he said. “I have very lofty goals for one of the oldest competitors.”
In order to prepare, Carraturo has undergone a stringent training schedule that sees him lifting weights for two days, three days of calisthenics and a day of track work sprinting and practicing football drills. He noted that the toughest part of training has been doing it alone, as close friends and family members aren’t often eager to join him.
“A competitor can get hurt if not properly training, especially if they have not been active in football type training for a few years,” he said. “I have gained weight and lost pants size and this has transformed the way I exercise in general.”