20th March 2013
Members of the Pedal de Alps squad endured another tough, but inspirational training session when they recently teamed up with a group of other amateur cyclists to ride with Hope's very own national cyclo-cross champion Paul Oldham. The eleven strong peloton had to fight against driving rain and strong winds as they made their way on the almost eighty mile journey from North Yorkshire to the Lake District.
Pedal de Alps team leader Paul Dixon was joined by twelve times FIM Trial World Champion Dougie Lampkin and fellow team member Jake Miller on this particular occasion. Whilst Hope were equally well represented by co-owners Ian Weatherill and Simon Sharp, they were also accompanied by two-wheel all rounder Rachael Walker who put in a serious shift in the saddle too. Support on the day was provided Hope's top spannerman Nick Owen, who put the team pursuit car through its paces ahead of him adopting a similar role on the full trip this coming summer.
The slightly unconventional route was plotted to truly test the budding bunch of cyclists, with a good variety of climbs scattered along the way in readiness for the immense proposition that lays ahead of the actual five strong team when the actual Pedal De Alps challenge gets underway proper on Friday 16th August later this year.
Starting from the back lanes of Eshton near Skipton, thirty-five year old Oldham led out his eager followers heading west towards Clitheroe before taking in the testing hills in the famous Trough of Bowland. Adding even more elevation to the route, the peloton climbed further as they pedalled almost across to Lancaster before turning north to Carnforth then onto the coastal town of Arnside. After a hearty lunch the remaining twenty miles or so took in Milnthorpe before the epic adventure ended under welcomed sunshine on the outskirts of Windermere.
Commenting on the opportunity of riding with Paul Oldham, Lampkin said. "When it comes to pedalling we are still novices and have so much to learn if we are to be successful in our challenge later this year. Paul is not only a great rider, but he is a great guy too."
"When I wasn't too out of breath to talk," Dougie went on to say "Paul was happy to chat away and to share his wealth of knowledge that has seen him achieve so much over a prolonged period."
"He makes it look effortless especially on the hills, when we were struggling he was not breathing heavy at all and even managed to pop the odd wheelie just to confirm how much work we have got ahead of us over the coming months." Lampkin continued.
"It was a really great chance to ride as such a big group and to have Nick and the support car in tow, it almost made us look like we knew what we were doing." Lampkin ended by confirming. "A big thanks needs to go to Ian, Simon, Paul and the rest of the Hope crew for making it happen and for their on going support of Pedal de Alps."
Lampkin and co will cover more than one thousand miles over twelve days or so as they pedal from Chorley to Nice via the Alps and take in some serious climbing this August, to raise as much money as possible for a very special children's hospice - Derian House.
www.justgiving.com/pedaldealps or by sending cheques payable to Derian House to Pedal de Alps HQ, 3 The Old Court House, Tenterden Street, Bury, UK - BL9 0AL
For further information please call + 44 (0) 161 763 6660 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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