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Olympian Samantha Murray urges you to be in with a shot of winning a brand new MINI!

Olympian Samantha Murray urges you to be in with a shot of winning a brand new MINI!

Olympic pentathlete Samantha Murray has launched the annual St Catherine's Hospice car raffle - and urged everyone to buy tickets to be in with a shot of winning a brand new MINI!

The London 2012 silver medallist - who competes in five disciplines including fencing, swimming, horse riding and combined run and shoot (a race of 3200m with 4 rounds of air pistol shooting) - has joined forces with the Lostock Hall charity and Bowker MINI to promote the amazing prize giveaway.

Tickets are just £2 with the latest model of this iconic car - which was only launched to the public in March - up for grabs as the star prize.

Proceeds raised through the raffle - which has been kindly sponsored by Bowker, Ian Wilde Funeral Directors, Cassidy and Ashton architects, Aegis Health and Safety, Thornber & Walker quantity surveyors and Sleater Watson civil and structural engineers - will help fund the hospice's specialised care for people affected by life-shortening conditions in Central Lancashire.

Samantha, aged 24, who was born in Preston, said: "What an incredible prize!

"I'll certainly be buying a ticket - it's a win, win because not only does it put you in with the chance of scooping this amazing new car, you're also showing your support for a local charity which does important work in the community.

"After a long day's training I'd love to jump in this MINI to take me home - though I'd have to be careful with my muddy trainers, riding boots and wet towels!"

Tickets are on sale now via the hospice or www.stcatherines.co.uk. The winning ticket will be drawn by classical superstar Katherine Jenkins on Saturday July 5th at the hospice's second night of Symphony at the Tower - a weekend of amazing music at Hoghton Tower near Preston, which also welcomes James Blunt on Friday July 4th.

The MINI Hatch, which is pepper white, is part of the first batch of the very latest model to come off the production line. The new car is bigger and more refined than before and features an all-new turbocharged engine line-up and even more upmarket interior.

It will be touring the area over the coming weeks and at all the hospice's spring and summer events - including the plant sale on May 11th, Big Charity Bike Ride on May 18th, Moonlight and Memories Walk on June 7th and Yellow Day garden fete on June 15h.

Sheila Kennard, Head of Promotions at St Catherine's Hospice, said: "It's been brilliant to welcome Samantha to the hospice and show her a little more about where the money raised through the car raffle will be spent.

"We're so excited to have such a state-of-the-art and fashionable car up for grabs, and would like to thank Bowker and all our sponsors for helping to make it happen.

"Now we hope lots of people will be inspired to buy tickets. Remember you can also buy books to sell on to your friends - just make sure the stubs are returned to the hospice by Monday June 30th. Good luck!"

Graham McMurray from Bowker MINI, who recently completed a 120-mile charity cycle ride with 14 staff which raised £1,500 for St Catherine's Hospice, said:

“We are delighted to support an important local charity like St Catherines once again. The MINI Hatch is an incredible new car, and we hope that as many people as possible will buy a ticket for their chance to win it.”

Tickets for the raffle are available from the hospice in Lostock Lane, Lostock Hall, Preston, PR5 5XU; at the charity's shops across the boroughs; online at www.stcatherines.co.uk; at Bowker MINI on Preston Docks (TBC); and at various community locations around the area.