A British man running the length of Africa has set off on his final day of the gruelling challenge in Tunisia.

Russ Cook, who calls himself “Hardest Geezer” on social media, has been running for more than 350 days and completed the equivalent of 385 marathons.

The 26-year-old, from Worthing, West Sussex, is now running the final 40km of the 16,000km challenge and has been joined by hundreds of supporters.

“One more day, one final push to get this thing done,” he said to Sky News shortly after setting off, with sports correspondent Rob Harris trying to keep up.

Mr Cook said he’d had a “few tears” this morning but had got it out of his system.

“352 days on the road is a long time without seeing family, my girlfriend. My body is in a lot of pain but I’ve only got one day, I’m not about to complain.”

He says he will become the first person to run the full of length of Africa if he completes the challenge.

He began his journey at Cape Agulhas, South Africa – the southernmost point of the African continent – in April 2023.

Russ Cook’s route across Africa

Mr Cook has been raising money for two charities along the way and has recently seen a surge in donations.

In the last seven days, he has raised more than £217,000 of his £568,000 total.

He is fundraising for The Running Charity, which supports the mental health of young people with complex needs or who are homeless, and Sandblast which educates people about Sahrawi culture.

But his journey hasn’t always been smooth.

In Angola, he and his team were robbed at gunpoint. They had cameras, phones and passports stolen.

Russ Cook in the final leg of running the length of Africa. Pic: Hardest Geezer
Russ Cook on the final leg of running the length of Africa. Pic: HardestGeezer/X

Then in August, Mr Cook went missing. He was separated from his supporters for days in the jungle in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

They eventually managed to free him by paying off villagers who were armed with machetes.

And in January, he turned to social media to help get a visa to cross the border from Mauritania into Algeria.

Russ Cook in the final days of his attempt to run the length of Africa. Pic: Hardest Geezer
Russ Cook is attempting to run the length of Africa. Pic: HardestGeezer/Instagram

At the time, he said his challenge could end without the visa as there was “no other way” for him to reach the northern tip of Africa.

“It is all hanging in the balance, to be honest,” he posted.

After a huge social media campaign, the Algerian Embassy said it would grant him a courtesy visa “on the spot”, meaning he could cross the border.

Although the run across Africa is his biggest challenge, it isn’t his first.

At 22, Mr Cook ran from Asia to England, completing 71 marathons in 66 days.

He had only run the Brighton Marathon before he decided to run from Asia to England.