On the #7days7irons challenge we needed to consider what would happen in case of mechanical failure and also how could I carry enough food and drink to keep me going through each day. We had the motor home but with it being 28ft long it was not possible to stay close to me on the bike and run. So we pinpointed 2 or 3 places along each daily route where the motor home would wait should I need a little rest, massage or a larger volume of food.
So, for immediate support we enlisted the help of some very good friends. Each of them, with their own cars spent a couple of days each with us and it meant that they could stay closer to me and never be more than 10 miles away. Not only was this really important in order to relay supplies but mentally it was great because I knew every few miles I would see a friendly face.
Simon Tween was there the night before we set off and stayed for a couple of days. I fear that the miles he covered in Megan (his car) may well have been some of her last. Si is pretty handy with his drone and camera so took some great footage on the first couple of days. We’ll not mention when he missed a rendevous point because he was busy with the drone!!
Pete Whitelaw came along and took control over the route. There had been some big problems with the route that I had planned and Pete took the lead to re-plan as we went on. He was great with a couple of mechanical issues on the bike and was very convincing every time he shouted to me that “this is the last hill”.
Day 5 was the turn of my brother Rob Collyer. It was so great hat he could come along even if I thought he had changed his mind having not seen him for the first 40 miles of the bike ride! Rob was so great at cheering me on when parked up and always gave a cheery ‘parp’ on the car horn as he passed. I’m so glad he was there.
On the last day and a half Ben Dickenson and Howard Dickenson (his Dad) arrived. Again, their support was invaluable. Howard kept a level head whilst Ben cheered me up with his banter as usual. I may not have responded well at the time but it did keep my spirits up towards the end.
Thank you to all of you. In your own ways you kept me going, you motivated me, made me laugh, gave me confidence, gave great advice and generally kept spirits up. You were also there for Laura when she was feeling down and needed a lift. To look back and know that my best mates and my brother were there as an integral part of the challenge is something that I will always be hugely grateful for. I could not have done it without the individual input of all of you.