Starting at 7:30 am on Saturday June 26, the ‘LEJOG’ challenge saw Scouse Dumont, Adam Foster, Patrick Heptinstall, Chris Harris, Dale Crowther, Karl-Eric Devaux and Graham Ward-Thompson ride their bikes in Land’s End and barely get it again until they arrive at John O’Groats at 5pm on Sunday July 4th.
In total, they cycled 967 miles, climbed 59,130 ââfeet and had been in the saddle for 65 hours, raising an impressive Â£ 20,006.01 for Wakefield Hospice.
They were supported by a small but very capable crew of three, with Iain Foster keeping them safe as a rider on his motorbike and Bev Dumont and Cath Heptinstall carrying supplies, setting up feeding stations and even singing “The Locomotion ‘in an effort to keep the guys’ cheer up (or get them away as quickly as possible).
The challenge was extremely difficult with difficult cycling conditions especially given the constantly changing UK weather and some serious hills with the 20% climbs to Aviemore causing leg pain.
There were also a few punctures along the way (mostly Dale’s) and a crash or two. The runners were encouraged by their friends, family and members of the triathlon club through their Facebook page, which was updated throughout by Bev.
They even had a number of guest appearances, with other runners along the route to tackle a section and boost morale as well as the club’s star baker, Mel Wass, who not only provided cakes for a refreshment station, but spent the year baking and selling cakes at club events and training sessions, raising Â£ 2,500 of the overall total. The final amount raised was Â£ 20,000 and the money was officially presented to the hospice last week.
Graham Ward-Thompson, LEJOG team member and club president, said: âWe were overwhelmed by the donations received and the messages of support that poured in on social media definitely kept us going during the challenge.
“We would like to say a big thank you to everyone who cheered us on and a bigger one to the wonderful support team who kept us energized and safe throughout the journey.”
Helen Knowles, Director of Income Generation at Wakefield Hospice, said: âIt has been a tough challenge, we are so proud of them and grateful for their support.
âMoney is vital for our survival right now, so any fundraising is such a big help for the hospice, especially how much the guys have raised.
“Their goal was to raise Â£ 11,500, the daily running cost of the hospice, which they absolutely crushed.”