A Wigan man who was told he may never run again has won a 100-mile race in such good time that he travelled four hours back home before his closest competitor crossed the finish line.
Dan Miller, a sports teacher from Billinge, won the “Jurrasic Coast 100” this weekend, his sixth ultramarathon in as many months.
The 28-year-old completed the race in just over 21 hours, running from Poole along the coast to Exmouth, stopping only to drink and have the occasional bite to eat.
Dan, who runs for Appley Bridge company the Endurance Store and teaches PE in West Lancashire primary schools, said: “It’s the first ultramarathon I have won.
“Everyone kept telling me how bad it was but I think they just didn’t want me getting my hopes up.
“It was quite hilly because it was along sea cliffs.”
Nine years ago, when Dan was a teenager, he was diagnosed with septicaemia after sustaining an injury in his leg.
It is believed to have been caused by a slight tear in one of his muscles which had bled.
He first noticed that something was wrong when he went to give blood and his knee swelled up.
Due to the serious nature of the infection, doctors told Dan that it was unlikely he would ever run again.
But he decided to persevere, getting back to running just six months after receiving the initially devastating news.
Last year, after taking part in several 50-mile races, Dan decided it was time to take part in the Lakeland 100 race through the Lake District - a challenge which took him around 27 and a half hours to complete.
Cutting six hours off his first ultramarathon time, Dan wowed organisers as he crossed the finish line well ahead of a his fellow runners.
“After I had done, I went back to the finish line to see second place come in,” he said.
“He wasn’t there so we ended up driving home.
“By the time we got back he was finishing.
“Everything just seemed to go really well for me on the day.”
Dan was supported by his wife Sara and the couple’s Springer Spaniel called Conker.
“Sometimes people have their families driving about and meeting them at different points,” he said.
“But on the Friday it took us eight hours to get there so I told Sara to go off and have a nice relaxing day.”
At the end of the race, Dan celebrated with a bacon butty.