You've probably heard of the Tour de France, the legendary cycle race that takes three weeks and covers over 3,000km. I haven't got time for that, hence Le Jour de France, a ride that will last 24 hours. As in, a proper, round-the-clock, through-the-night 24 hours. Possibly a bit longer.
We'll start in St Malo at about 7.30am on Friday 28 June and head out on a 480km loop, following a route that outlines possibly the largest ermine spot* ever drawn. You can see the full route (and, technology permitting, follow our progress) at http://www.lejourdefrance.org.uk/.
Clearly this is't going to be easy, but things worth doing rarely are. There's just two of us tackling the full route -- the other is Stewart Pratt, whose ridiculous idea it all is. He's raising money for homeless charity St Mungo's, find out more at his fundraising page. We have some extra riders to help for part of it (and to act as support crew the rest of the time).
My chosen charity for this frankly somewhat daunting undertaking is Mind, the mental health charity. Mental health isn't something that people tend to talk about, which doesn't make it any easier to deal with. I know (or have known) too many people whose lives have been affected (or, sadly, ended) due to mental health problems. And I'm sure I know other people who are struggling on without anyone knowing, just like hundreds of thousands of people do.
Here's what Mind says about its work:
We won't give up until everyone experiencing a mental health problem gets support and respect.
Every year, one in four of us will experience a mental health problem.
But hundreds of thousands of people are still struggling to get the support they need. Still unable to access the services that could change their life. Still facing prejudice and misunderstanding.
Mind believes no one should have to face a mental health problem alone. We’ll listen, give you support and advice, and fight your corner. And we’ll push for a better deal and respect for everyone experiencing a mental health problem.
Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving – they’ll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – saving time and cutting costs for the charity.
So please dig deep and donate now.
Need further encouragement? How about:Win a Bryton Rider 20 GPS
The fine folk at road.cc have offered a Bryton Rider 20 GPS to one lucky winner Le Jour de France donor chosen at random from this page or Stewart's donation page. To be in with a shout:
- When making a donation, include your Twitter handle in the comment
- Then just click this link to tweet your donation.
* It's part of the flag of Brittany -- see what we did there?