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A York couple are celebrating after scooping an £8,000 wedding in a competition run by The Press media partners, YO1 Radio, and the Pavilion Hotel on Fulford Road.

Sarah Pretty and Seb Geczy were one of over 150 couples who entered the ‘Race to the Altar’ competition, beating off the opposition in a series of challenges before reaching the final held on Saturday (22nd June).

In a thrilling final race, Sarah and Seb were dropped off outside Selby Abbey, along with other finalists Jenny McCartney and Greg Dunn, with no mobile phone and just a small amount of cash. The challenge was to get to York Minster, and then to the Pavilion Hotel, as fast as possible using at least three different modes of transport, but with time penalties for using the cash or spending more than 20 minutes on any form of transport.

Between them, the two couples borrowed bikes from children and from a staff member at a York restaurant, they rode a mobility scooter, took a train, managed to grab a free taxi – and did a lot of running!

In the end just a few minutes separated the couples, with Sarah and Seb taking just under two hours to arrive at the Altar.

The winning couple were planning just a very small, low cost, wedding for close family and friends – but now they’re celebrating something special with the prize package including a reception for 80 guests, red carpet welcome, disco and DJ, an overnight stay in the honeymoon suite – and full use of the wedding ceremony and function rooms at the Pavilion Hotel.

Speaking to YO1 Radio’s Griffo, Seb said: “This seems like destiny. We discovered YO1 Radio some time ago when our car radio aerial was snapped off and the only radio station we could receive was YO1 Radio. We became hooked on the station and then, when we heard about the competition, we just knew we had to enter.”

An emotional Sarah said: “We are so happy – but we do feel for the other couples, especially Jenny and Greg. We’ve made some amazing friends along the way. Every couple taking part was just so nice and the whole experience has been great fun.”

Petunia Freedman, Events & Wedding Manager at the Pavilion Hotel said:  “I’m still buzzing from the weekend. We’ve loved working with YO1 Radio and all the couples. It’s been an amazing journey, and it was so lovely to see Sarah and Seb so excited. It really is a dream come true for them and we can’t wait to start planning the day with them.”

And, Dale Bartleson, Commercial Director of YO1 Radio, said: “The whole competition couldn’t have gone better. It was so emotional and tense on the final day. I was a total wreck listening to the day unfold. Many thanks to everyone who took part and, of course, to the Pavilion Hotel for getting fully behind the race and for providing this amazing prize which will really change Sarah and Seb’s life”

You can see footage of the final on Yo1 Radio’s social media @thisisyo1

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