Tireless Hartlepool fundraiser saddles up for 100-mile cycling challenge despite nerve damage caused by car crash
A tireless hospice fundraiser has set the wheels in motion on a new challenge and is inviting supporters to come along for the ride.
Phil Holbrook is saddling up on a tandem bike with friend Darrel Slater to cycle 100 miles this month despite suffering nerve damage down one side of his body after a horrific car crash eight years ago.
Phil came up with the Cycle A Century idea as part of his charity #TeamSally, named after his late wife who tragically died in the crash, which has raised money for Hartlepool’s Alice House Hospice for seven years.
Supporters are also invited to get on their bikes and complete 100 miles or 100km before the end of July for a small donation.
Phil, 60, of the Fens, said: “It’s a brand new challenge for the charity.
"After my accident my balance is shot to pieces. I’ve got nerve damage all down my left hand side which makes cycling impossible.”
That was when friend and fellow parkrun runner Darrel stepped forward with his tandem.
Phil, who organises numerous events and activities for the charity throughout the year, added: "Last year I did a cycle a marathon event which about 60 people did and raised £6,000 for the hospice.
“With Covid restrictions I thought we can’t have a mass participation event,” said Phil. “But if people do it over a month it encourages them to split the distance.”
He and Darrel have done around 35 miles so far with the pair becoming a familiar sight on the roads.
Phil added: It gets quite a reaction when you pass people. Some give you a thumbs up and beep their horn.
"Some kids have never seen a tandem before and the look on their faces; they can’t take it in and some are actually on bikes themselves!”
People can do their century for a minimum donation of £7.50 and will receive an e-certificate to show they have completed it.
And for a £20 pledge participants will also get a specially designed finisher’s t-shirt.