News: Summer Solstice Charity Rides

Two riders, Will Scott and Matthew Exley started pedalling at 4:42am on June 20th and finished at 21:26 riding for a total distance of 502kms in aid of charity

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News: Summer Solstice Charity Rides

Two riders from the Flamme Rouge P/b Grenade cycling team decided to take on a little challenge yesterday during the Summer Solstice. To ride from Sunrise to Sunset, hoping to ride 500km during the longest day. Will Scott (27) and Matthew Exley (30) started pedalling at 4:42am on June 20th and finished at 21:26 riding for a total distance of 502kms.

The original plan which came from British YouTuber, Lawrence Carpenter, was “just” to see how far they could ride on the day of the Summer Solstice. After thinking of routes and distances the riders were going to attempt to ride from Land’s End to London. But due to the restrictions on travel and overnight stays that idea was replaced with attempting it on a circuit nearer Will and Matt’s home.

Once this was firmed up the two both chose a charity to try and raise £500 each with Will fundraising for Mind ( and Matt crowdfunding to aid the Corona Virus Research lead by Oxford University (

With a 2.2 mile/3.5km circuit based on the road racing circuit used in Cranfield the setting for their challenge, the two met up at the Cranfield University, along with their Team Manager Sarah Hooper and photographer Alex Duffill at 4am. Thankfully with being a new dad Matt is currently quite used to lacking sleeping hours.

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Team mates, friends and local riders stopped by throughout the day to give some much needed morale to keep the guys going. And with their average speed above 20mph this allowed them to have enough natural breaks and food stops to keep them “comfortable” and more importantly make sure their sugar levels were topped up.

It was all going well until coming into the last 5 laps Will struggled badly. Going up the draggy hill he felt like he was going to fall off his bike. They pulled in for what may have been their last stop. But with a combination of jelly babies, chocolate, caffeine drinks and Matt’s playful goading the two got back in the saddle for the last effort to hit 500km.

With family members ready at the road side with the champagne the duo started their event as they finished it crossing the line together after 502kms ridden. at the end of it they had this to say:

Will: “Just want to say a huge thank you to everyone that came out and supported us, rode with us, donated, helped, genuinely couldn’t have got through this without you, almost didn’t”

Matt: “A massive thanks to everyone as Will said, big day out, really worked hard, 3-4 hours sleep last night and all these hours on the bike today have been extremely tough. It’s for a really good cause so if you haven’t donated already then please do.

Will: “Until next time……… there won’t be a next time”

At the time of writing this the pair had raised £1784 for their chosen charities.

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