by Juliette Clark
HotChillee Ride Captain and Super Woman
HotChillee Ride Captains are known for relishing long, hard days in the saddle but in 2017 I am taking this to another level as I have entered the London-Edinburgh-London Audax – a distance of 1436K, around 890 miles, setting myself a target of just over 4 days.
When I tell people of this challenge their first question is always WHY? My original intention was to simply dedicate the ride to my wonderful childhood friend Nicky who died of cancer when we were 28.
At that time I had trouble understanding her death, we were supposed to have our lives ahead of us, we were forging careers, making our way as adults, still believing we could change the world for the better. We had ambitions, we had dreams, but hers were never to be realised. I came to accept the loss, but the pain never left. Unbelievably that was 25 years ago. Even after all these years, I still miss her unconditional friendship and abiding kindness.
However, more recently I’ve seen others go through the pain of bereavement, dear friends who’ve lost a wife, a niece, and others suffering the loss of a child. Just this April, Danny Turnbull, one of the hand-cyclists from the legendary Stoke Mandeville and Stewarts Law team who blazed a trail from London to Paris in 2012 finally lost the battle with cancer.
With all these losses my challenge has taken on a more significant meaning. Too many people are losing the battle, too many lives ripped apart. So the ride will not only be to raise funds for Cancer Research UK to aid the quest to beat cancer but also to commemorate anyone and everyone that has been lost to cancer; not just Nicky and Danny but all the others. Send me the names of your loved ones and I will read a roll-call of loving memory at the end of ride. I will be blogging along the way, the final entry being a video.
Bring on the target of 220 miles a day, the pain and discomfort of approximately half a million pedal revolutions, the attendant soreness, sleep deprivation, gastro-intestinal distress – all of this is small change if we can just be a part of bringing nearer the day that we can say we beat cancer.
You can donate to Juliette’s challenge at www.JustGiving.com/fundraising/Juliette-Clark-2Many
Juliette will be posting regular updates about the event and how she is preparing for an endurance challenge of this nature.