On Thursday 16th June this year, Bournemouth students Ben Brewer, John Phillips and Sam Ward will embark on a 6,000km Trans American Charity Cycle to raise up to £10,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support. Starting on the Atlantic Coast at Virginia Beach, Virginia, their route will take them west through nine states, across challenging terrain including the Utah and Nevada deserts, to their end destination of San Francisco, California, on the Pacific Coast.
The three friends will be cycling unsupported, carrying all their gear on their bikes and will spend their things camping out under the stars. They hope to complete the 3,800 miles journey in around 40-45 days, during which they will cycle through Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Utah, Nevada and California.
Ben Brewer, 23 years old, said: “Macmillan is an absolutely amazing charity. Everything they do to help the families cope as well as the patients themselves is extraordinary, and being able to do something like this as a means of raising money for Macmillan is brilliant. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and what better way to use our time than to help make a difference for people that need it the most.”
John Phillips, 23 years old, said: “We decided we wanted to do something truly amazing with our summer. As well as helping a great cause it’s also a big personal challenge for us. Macmillan Nurses have a special place in the hearts of my family as they helped care for my Grandmother towards the end of her days. When we decided to do this cycle ride, we didn’t ever consider raising money for anyone else but Macmillan.”
Richard Scott, a Fundraising Manager at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “Ben and John really have set themselves a gruelling physical challenge. It’s a once in a lifetime experience, and it’s fantastic that they are raising money for Macmillan at the same time. I’m sure that when their legs are aching, knowing that what they are doing is helping people affected by cancer will keep them going. I wish them the very best of luck!”
The friends have enlisted the help of fellow student, Julian Dominique, a Sports Development student at Bournemouth University to make sure they are in tip top shape for their challenge.
Julian said: “The guys are doing a great job with training and are currently well into the second phase of a periodised training plan – with nutritional guidance – that I have tailored specifically to their individual needs, to ensure that they are fully prepared physically and mentally before their journey begins! I am really proud of Ben & John and look forward to seeing all their hard work pay off.”
All three cyclists are studying at Bournemouth University, Ben is studying Advertising with Marketing Communications and Sam is in his final year of Environmental protection and management. John is a Software Engineering student, currently doing an internship at Goldman Sachs in London.
The friends fly out early on Wednesday 15 June and will be started the cycle on Thursday 16 June.
To find out more about the Trans America Cycle Challenge please see here: http://www.vimeo.com/20756408.
To make a donation please see here: http://www.justgiving.com/ben-john-cycle/