Elliotts employees saddle up for 450-mile charity cycle

Published:  08 September, 2015

Employees from Elliotts are preparing to cycle 450 miles across the Alps for charity, completing a relay to Alpe d’Huez, France.

The team taking on the challenge includes a father and son, a former Olympian and a husband and wife who will complete the challenge on a tandem bike.

Tom Elliott, managing director, will be taking to the saddle alongside his father, Elliotts chairman Stuart Mason-Elliott, who is no stranger to the bike. Mr Mason-Elliott, an antique cycle enthusiast, recently completed an 860km ride on an original velocipede built in 1869. His challenge raised more than £7000 for Cancer Research UK.

Husband and wife team Steve and Geraldine Upson, from Polypipe, an Elliotts supplier, will complete their sections of the route on a tandem.

Trevor King, who works for security at Elliotts and is father of world champion cyclist Dani King, is hoping his previous training as a biathlete will kick in as he also jumps on his bike for charity. Mr King competed in the 1984 and 1988 Winter Olympics.

The fundraising venture has been arranged through Challenge Adventure Charities, which works to ensure that every penny of sponsorship goes to the team's chosen charities, Cancer Research UK and the British Heart Foundation.

Challenge Adventure Charities was formed in 1996 by Mr Mason-Elliott and every year sends teams on routes that are challenging, yet achievable by ordinary cyclists.

The Alpe d'Huez Challenge 2015 will see the team cycle in relay from Troyes to Alpe d'Huez over three days from September 17. They will take in views across the Champagne and wine regions, forests and river valleys, and the vertigo-inducing mountains of Rhône-Alpes and Vercors.

Elliotts has in the past sponsored Ringwood Carnival as well as a number of local football and rugby clubs. It has also supported cyclist Dani King since she was a teenager.

Mr Elliott said: "It's always been important to Elliotts to give back to the community and to dedicate ourselves to raising money for charity, so we're taking a team of ordinary people on an extraordinary challenge. It won't be easy, but we will soon forget about the pain once we stand at the top of the Alpe d'Huez. We're hoping the donations will flood in."

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