20 July 2022

Largs to Cowes riders smash 600 mile challenge

The Largs to Cowes ‘Brighter Futures’ Cycle Challenge cyclists have raised almost £24,000 after completing an epic 600-mile ride to support young people living through and beyond cancer.

The Largs to Cowes group of riders together at the Trust's East Cowes base

Eleven riders participated in the gruelling challenge, tackling a picturesque but demanding route between the charity's bases, starting out on a rainy day in North Ayrshire and concluding on the Isle of Wight.

Their incredible achievement will now inspire more young people to believe in a brighter future through transformational sailing experiences and outdoor adventures.

The Largs to Cowes riders included both supporters of the Trust and young people who have benefitted from taking part in its activities following treatment for cancer. Seven riders pedalled all 600 miles: Avalon Ridler, Simon Townsend, Roisin Smith, Liam Wright, Holly Hudson, Max Goulden and Ben Pitman. Also completing monster miles after signing up for the challenge were Ian Wright and Amelia Caley, along with day riders John Stewart and Theresa Kennedy.

Cycling 75-80 miles a day with Pie Events, the riders pedalled across Britain over eight consecutive days (17-24 June 2022) through Scotland, Cumbria, Yorkshire and Cheshire, then on to Ironbridge, Herefordshire, Wiltshire and the south coast.

'An extraordinary achievement'

Dame Ellen MacArthur, who was in Cowes to welcome and congratulate the team, said: “On behalf of every single young person who sails with the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, thank you, thank you to all of the riders on the Largs to Cowes ‘Brighter Futures’ Cycle Challenge. I know they had the most amazing adventure and a wonderful time.

“It’s a phenomenally long trip from the north to the south of the UK. It was always going to be a real challenge, and it reminded me of when I first sailed round Britain when I was 18. The countryside was absolutely stunning and I shall never forget being astounded at how beautiful our countries are.

"But when you have a challenge I always say think through to the other side, that’s the most important, prepare as best as possible and think about why you’re doing it. The riders know the young people the Trust supports need us more than ever right now, so it’s an extraordinary achievement and an extraordinary thing they have done. Well done to all the riders and thank you again.”

While the ride has so far raised nearly £24,000 for the Trust and counting, towards the challenge target of £25,000, donations are still welcome and hugely appreciated via the Largs to Cowes challenge hub at: https://largs-to-cowes.blackbaud-sites.com/