7th June 2017

Mountain challenge to raise funds for hospice

A group of intrepid mountain bikers are taking part in a fearless challenge, in a bid to raise thousands of pounds for a local charity.

Eleven members of Malvern MTB will be taking part in Mountain Mayhem, a 24 hour mountain bike endurance event.

Taking place at Gatcombe Park – Princess Anne’s equestrian estate – in Gloucestershire from Friday 16 to Sunday 18 June, the event will celebrate its 20th anniversary this year.

Malvern MTB is entering two teams of four and three solo riders and is hoping to raise around £3,500 for St Richard’s Hospice.

The event will officially begin on Saturday 17 June at 12midday where there will be a Le Mans style start, with riders running for their bikes and heading out on the first of many 8mile laps.  A lap will include technical singletracks, long climbs and technical descents; the aim of the race is to complete as many laps as possible in 24 hours.

Brad Luckman, from Malvern MTB said : “We are pleased to announce that we are raising funds for St Richard’s Hospice at this year’s Mountain Mayhem.  The hospice is very close to our hearts as a team and as individuals and it is our way of saying thank you for the care it has given loved ones and the support it continues to provide to local families during dark times.

“Training for the event is an endurance in itself but we are all looking forward to challenging ourselves and raising money for such a worthy cause.”

Team One is made up of the following :

Brad Luckman, 36, Mechanical Engineer, Protego UK

Brad, from Malvern, has personal links with the hospice as his mother, Cheryl Luckman, was a patient before her death from cancer in 2002.  Brad has been a biking enthusiast for the past four years and this will be his second Mayhem attempt.

Mark Bell, 35, Asset and Compliance Manager, Fortis Living

Close friends since school days, Brad introduced Mark – who also lives in Malvern – to biking two years ago and he has been hooked ever since!

Chris Thomas, 33, Company Director, Spirit Executive

Chris, from Welland, is a regular at Mountain Mayhem and consistently achieves plenty of laps in good times.

Matt Lambeth, 36, Technical Sales, Islabikes

Matt has been riding with Malvern MTB for a few years now and acts as its coach and trainer.  In 2014 he was a member of a winning Mayhem team with Malvern Cycle Sport.  Matt lives in Malvern.

Team Two is made up of the following :

Andy Bottomley, 46, Sales Manager, Charlesworth

Andy is a seasoned rider at Mayhem events.  He knows just how tough the event is, particularly the night laps, and is sure to help his team mates through the twilight hours.  Renowned for his downhill tumbles, his record last year was 5 crashes in 1 lap!

Jason Lloyd, 44, Marketing Manager, Stirling House Financial Services

Jason is a complete beginner to mountain biking and this will be his first event; he has, however competed in many long distance running events this year including half and full marathons.

Marcus Hole, 49, Marketing Manager, FLI Structures

A seasoned Mayhem racer, Marcus is a key member of the team and its strategic lead.

Sam Smith, 26, coffee shop owner, Waylands Yard

Sam, a former professional rugby player, played for the England U20s; he won the 2011/12 premiership with Harlequins before playing for Worcester Warriors.  This will be Sam’s first racing event.

Solo riders are :

Phil Leah, 49, Estate Maintenance, Malvern St James

Phil is the founding member of Malvern MTB and has raced at Mountain Mayhem many times; this, however, will be his first attempt at a solo effort.  A close friend of Phil’s, Simon Griffiths was cared for by St Richard’s before his death from cancer in October 2016, aged just 47 years old; for Phil, raising funds is his way of saying thank you to the hospice.

Chris Kent, 51, Finance Director, Jaguar Land Rover

Chris has been a member of Malvern MTB since it was launched in 2012 and has competed in 10 Mountain Mayhem events.  Chris is hoping for a better race than last year’s when – on the last lap – a crash with an elite rider resulted in a broken thumb.  To add insult to injury, someone crashed into the back of his car on the drive home!

Chris Grubb, 35, Postman

Chris is racing in memory of his father, Billy, who died at the hospice in 2010, aged 56. It is fitting that the race runs over Father’s Day.

To donate to Malvern MTB please visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/MalvernMTB.

Most MTB members train between two and three times a week, with training rides consisting of long endurance rides, time trial sprints and steep climbing repetitions; they ride at least one night ride per week to gain valuable experience of riding at pace in the dark.

The group has received support in the form of sponsorship in return for logo space on their t-shirts.  Sponsors are :

County Windows and Conservatories – the company has purchased all team shirts which means 100 per cent of all other donations will go to the hospice;

Malvern Engineering Ltd;

Precision CNC Machining;

European Car Services;

Colwall Motor Services;

Asset International;

Malvern Hotel and Spa;

County Building Supplies;

Ready Rent Ltd;

Central RPL;

Protego UK;

Impact 9.

Rachel Jones, Fundraising Manager at St Richard’s Hospice said : “The Malvern MTB team are an impressive bunch of endurance athletes and we are thrilled that they have decided to fundraise for us.  The Mountain Mayhem event requires stamina and strength and we wish the team all the best! “

The event is organised by Pacific Edge Events and is sponsored by Go Outdoors.