Kev Bryant, Neil Green, Geoff Hickman, Mark Hornby and Neil Saxton cycled the North Coast 500, a 516-mile ride around the spectacular, and hilly, extreme north of Scotland that begins and ends at Inverness.
They trained in rain, snow and wind through January, February and March, thinking that the actual event in May would be easier. But they were wrong. They encountered extremes of weather and their 2,000-foot traing climbs were nothing compared to the 5,000 or 6,000 feet a day they faced in the real thing.
“It was brutal, I mean really brutal,” says Kev Bryant.
“It wasn’t just the incessant storms of days 1 and 2, the seven hail storms, the gale-force headwinds, cross winds and tail winds, it was the cold and dampness. And the climbs.”
Nick Saxton mangled his bike on day 1 and the spare was not set up for him, so he quickly he developed a knee soreness, as did Mark Hornby.
On day 3, Geoff Hickmann hit the ground at 35mph, breaking a collar bone.
Day 4 was one of sunshine and vicious cross winds. Day 5 brought sunshine, light winds and a glorious picnic lunch.
The riders had covered more than 500 miles in five days ascending some 27,000 feet – almost the height of Mount Everest.
They raised more than £1,000 for the Teenage Cancer Trust (which E.ON will double) and another £1,500 for our other charities.
There is still time to donate.
See pictures from the ride.
The Teenage Cancer Trust is E.ON’s nominated charity. To date employees have raised more than £40,000 for it.