Hand Cyclist Tackles London-Paris 2012

A Stoke Mandeville Hand Cyclist team, sponsored by Stewarts Law LLP, to participate in 520km ride from London to Paris

HotChillee today announced that it will have its first ever Hand Cyclist team on the leading multi-stage ‘Tour de France’ style event. The Jimmy Savile Stoke Mandeville Hospital Trust team, sponsored by Stewarts Law LLP, will complete The London-Paris 2012, a three stage, 520 km ride from London to Paris.

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Alan Cook out on his Hand Cycle

The team aims to raise £500,000 for The London-Paris’ fourth official charity partner, the Jimmy Savile Stoke Mandeville Hospital Trust. This is the first year the charity is an official partner and the money raised will go to the Spinal Injuries Centre – the birthplace of the Paralympics back in 1948 and a Centre of Excellence in spinal medicine. The money will go towards providing sports facilities, including a sports hall and a hydrotherapy pool.

The Hand Cyclist team includes Jane Sowerby, who competed for Great Britain in the 2010 Paralympics in Ski-racing, Daniel Edwards, who participated in the 2010 140-mile ride across the Pennines, Luke Delahunty, an outdoor activity enthusiast, Daniel Turnbull, partner at Stewarts Law LLP and representative of GB at junior level table tennis and basketball and Alan Cook, who has skied the Alps and Rockies, been to the top of Snowdon and Ben Nevis and hand-cycled to John O’Groats to Ben Nevis.

All members are passionate sportspeople, but most are new to hand cycling. The Stoke Mandeville team will consist of a 20-strong peloton, including the five hand cyclists and able bodied assistant riders, complete with a HotChillee Ride Captain, Skoda lead vehicle, motorbike outriders, mechanical support and neutral service.  Staff from Stoke Mandeville including senior managers, nurses and therapists will also be on hand throughout the event to support the team. There will also be four sponsored riders from Stewarts Law.

Jane Sowerby says: “The London-Paris Ride will be an incredible personal challenge for me and I am looking forward to pushing myself to the absolute limit.  I am really proud to be able to raise much needed funds to help provide the sports and rehabilitation facility at Stoke Mandeville.  The benefit of sport as part of rehabilitation following a spinal injury is crucial both physically and psychologically.”

Daniel Turnbull, partner at Stewarts Law LLP says: “Stewarts Law are proud to support this fantastic challenge for such a great cause. Stoke Mandeville Hospital was the birthplace of the Paralympics, which is very fitting to the goals of the team.”

Sven Thiele of HotChillee says: “It is an honour to have the Stoke Mandeville team joining us. The whole London-Paris experience is hugely rewarding and takes place in a safe and fun environment, replicating the Tour de France experience. The Stoke Mandeville team’s goal to raise money for a hospital so close to the nation’s hearts is truly inspiring. The hospital’s National Spinal Injuries Centre is one of the best spinal injury units in the World and the passion of the staff was evident during my recent visit there. Stoke Mandeville has a strong heritage dating back to World War II and the unit and its staff well deserve the reputation as a Centre of Excellence.”

The London-Paris is recognised as one of the world’s most exciting cycling events open to the public and is the closest the amateur rider can get to the Tour de France experience. The event is distinguished by motorbike outriders, rolling road closures in France and professional logistical back up from Hampton Court to The Eiffel Tower.  The London-Paris is one of  two multi stage cycling events granted road closures to the finish in the centre of the French capital – the other is the Tour de France.



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