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Boat Club raise PS3,500 on nationwide bike ride

Rowers take on gruelling bike ride to raise funds for a new boat for Women's Eight crew

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The University of York Boat Club have raised £3,500 after completing a gruelling bike ride from Land's End to John O'Groats.

The group started out with nine riders, Will Fuller, Tom Calvert, Stuart Hosie, Jack Wiseman, Daniel Bendjelloul, Mark Woosey, Abbie Flanagan, Alex Ighalo and Serena Ward. The ride itself took 12 days to complete. The club have been raising money to purchase a new women's eight rowing boat, which will allow the club to continue to compete at a high level.

Before the main ride, the group completed a training camp in Yorkshire. They completed some hill triaining on the Yorkshire Dales which helped the team prepare mentally and physically for the challenge.The ride was very challenging and getting to John O'Groats was hardly a simple task. One member of the team suffered a seizure on the ride north, another had an allergic reaction which required paramedical assistance.

The team also suffered from a virus, which knocked three of the group out of the ride to Scotland. Along with this, the team experienced a variety of injuries on the ride and some were involved in minor road accidents. The group also suffered from mechanical problems on the ride. The truck that followed and supported the team on the ride broke down just south of Edinburgh.

Although the bike ride was the main fundraising event, it is part of a larger fundraising calendar for the club, who have also completed a 24 hour indoor rowing challenge to raise funds. Additionally, the club will be hosting a colour festival on the 29 September to generate further funds.

Will Fuller, the main trip organiser and Development Officer at the club commented: "The trip was extremely challenging, but equally rewarding. Obviously not everything went to plan, but it has all been made worthwhile by the amazing donations we've been given.

"It was a once in a lifetime trip, and the whole team was excellent. Thanks to our sponsors: Up&Go, Fuel10k, and York Sport for their support, and we're already looking ahead to our next challenge!"

Jack Wiseman, the one member of the team who cycled the entire distance said: "Taking part in LEJOG was one of the best things I've ever decided to do!The sense of accomplishment when we finished was absolutely incredible and I saw beautiful parts of the country in a way I never otherwise could.

"The constant physical and mental fatigue was so draining and we encountered so many problems along the way just to add to the challenge I would recommend it to anyone who has the opportunity to complete it, but you'll soon realise why it's described as a once in a life time experience."

The boat club had a very successful season last year. The highlight was their complete domination at Roses. The club whitewashed Lancaster, taking all 24 points on offer and were subsequently named 'Roses Club of the Year'.

You can still donate to the UYBC 'Bikes for Boats' YuStart campaign, here:

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