They did it!

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Impressive statistics from Nimesh Bharadia and Frank Bastow, who completed the Ride 24 Newcastle to Londonchallenge on 22-23 August. They rode to raise money for The June Hancock Mesothelioma Research Fund, who support sufferers of a terrible disease that has claimed so many lives in the construction industry. The aim was to raise £2000, which pays for a year’s social events that mean mesothelioma sufferers can meet others, relax away from the clinical environment and access advice and support.

The route heads out over the Tyne, past the Angel of the North and on to the Yorkshire Hills to warm up the legs. Through York and down to cross the Humber then on to historic Lincoln and the welcome flat lands beyond. As night time arrives, riders pass remote villages and speed through the quiet English countryside. As the sun rises, the Capital’s skyline is in sight – and as the finish line approaches the clock seems to stand still – is it less than 24 hours?

The route is broken down into 7 stages of approximately 35-50 miles, with rest stops at the end of each leg to take on food and drink, and to sort any repairs to bike and body!

It was all smiles at the start despite some ominous clouds- but at least there was a lucky 13 ride vest for Frank, with Nim taking vest 22 as they posed for a start line selfie.

As they set off at 11am, the wind did its best to slow them down but they were unfazed, clocking up an impressive ride as far as York and beating some of the more professional and serious riders to the rest point.

Setting off again, they were separated by time a little as conditions became a little more challenging, but both were on track to complete the ride in 24 hours.

As the afternoon turned to evening, the weather punished our heroes. Rain, hailstones and high winds impacted on their progress and rest points became more about changing and drying off than real rest.

Nim described riding through remote areas in the dead of night lit only by the lights from the riders in his group as beautiful and said it really brought the group together to look out for each other. Frank was busy making friends in his group too, and capturing more selfies.

As dawn broke the weather improved slightly, though it was clear that finishing within 24 hours was going to be a big ask. Undaunted, they pushed on, determined to finish.

Catching up at the last rest point, Nim and Frank decided to enjoy the last leg of the ride and cross the finishing line together- or as close as they could manage.

Frank finished in 26 hours, 26 minutes- Nim was just behind, arriving fashionably late(r) at 26 hours, 56 minutes.

Surprisingly, both could walk just fine the next day, if a little more carefully than normal.

Their fundraising total stands at £4690- over double the original target.

One day’s hard work by two guys funds two years of support for mesothelioma sufferers. Their achievement will allow people with the disease to connect with others outside hospital, and be more than a patient.

Thank you to all who have supported them so far- and until 13 September, you still can!

305 miles covered- on average that’s a little over £15 raised per mile.

Amazing work. 

I’ll leave you with the finish line photos – they say more than words can!

 

 

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