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2015 John Aspinall Coast to Coast

An inspiring story of the Magnificent Seven

On a bright sunny September morning in Morecambe, Team EMPOWERED people
set off on, for some of the riders, their first C2C journey.

This journey would consist of many miles covering the beautiful English country side, from busy roads to peaceful lanes, supportive onlookers to impatient motorists, from killer inclines to nice flat runs but simply all coming together to create an epic journey that all involved would remember with great pride and fondness for a long time.

The team was made up of 7 EMpowered riders, Rashmi Barker (51) on a handcycle , Ian Jones (54) on an electric bike, Simon Lord (57) on an electric bike, Kathryn Perry (37) with Neil on the bike train, Charlotte Rainford (23) on a trike, Glenys Roberts (63) on a trike and Graham Sherwood (60) on an electric bike. All supported by a dedicated group of volunteers as marshalls, brew crew
and support riders, without whom, the EMpowered riders have all said that they couldn’t have achieved it without them.

Day 1

After some moving words from Betty, John’s sister ….we were off! The day brought awe inspiring views and glorious sunshine. Straight away the support riders sprung in to action as we tackled some major inclines, which didn’t give up, as even the Hawes youth hostel we stayed at was on a hill!! Everyones spirit was high as we rolled into a peaceful youth hostel with beautiful views.

A good evening was had discussing the highs and lows of the 45mile ride, with over 3700ft elevation gain and onto an early night for the next days ride. Well that’s what we thought, as everyone was woken with a shock as the fire alarm went off at 2.00 a.m.!

Day 2

Even with the cloudy start and little sleep everyone was raring to go again. A quick technical problem on one of the trikes sorted, we were off. Again some major inclines to manoverve but the support team or “wingmen” as affectionately became known as, were on it like a flash. The cold damp conditions meant it was a matter of keeping your head down and peddling! Everyone’s spirit was raised as we turned the corner and saw the brew crew all
set up, waiting with a cuppa and a slice of malt loaf! Things had brightened up a little by the time we hit lunch stop in Masham. That afternoon we got to see the determination, or should I say the stubbornness, of our one and only Chief Cheese, as he got knocked of his bike. There were no physical injuries maybe just some to his pride as the rest of us enjoyed ribbing him at dinner! For some arriving at the hotel at the end of Day 2 (Easingwold) was a massive milestone in itself. As it was the first time they had hit the 100 mile mark riding, for one EMpowered rider this was a great achievement in itself and she again said that she couldn’t have done it without the support she had had. 55miles travelled with just over 2300ft elevation gain

Day 3

The final count down! Everyone was up and in high spirits again despite a fuse blowing at 1.00 am, due to the batteries being charged up overloading the system. The plug sparking had caused some hysterics with some of the EMpowered riders a story for another time! So with 100 miles under our belt and very little sleep people were tired but still determined to finish. Lots of
head wind into Scarborough coupled with busy roads and huge country vehicles meant it was a bit of a slog. It became a case of mind over the elements. The little island oasis, known as the brew stops were even more important today, emotions were high and bodies were weary. One thing that did bring a smile to our faces during the lunch stop was a little cry of “help I can’t get out of the toilet tent”- the zip was stuck!

There was a big gasp as we came round the corner and saw the sea! There were tears of joy even before we had stopped. Arriving on the prom, it sank in ……..WE HAD DONE IT! We had travelled from Morecambe to Scarborough 152.6 miles with over 7300ft elevation gain. Simply an epic journey by some awe inspiring individuals who over come their own personal struggles to achieve this totally amazing challenge.

A magnificent ride by the Magnificent Seven

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