Elena Baltacha Foundation Charity Bike Ride Success - #JoinTheRide
Posted 08 Sep 2016
A Great Success
So the dust has settled and the Elena Baltacha Foundation cyclists are fully recovered after their incredible effort in August. We're happy to report that the Charity Bike Ride was a huge success, raising funds for the Foundation and spreading the word about the great work that is being done in Bally's name. The ride, which was part of the Ipswich Cycling Weekend, involved a 100 mile route around Suffolk, stretching as far north as Laxfield and passed through towns and villages including Aldeburgh, Wickham Market and Orford.
Both teams were cheered on from start to finish, not just by friends and family, but by crowds of spectators on the whole route who'd come out to enjoy the event. Apart from a few incidents of cramp, which were quickly dealt with by Nino Severino, and a wrong turn just as #TeamBen approached Ipswich(!), the riders had a great time, with all the Foundation cyclists giving 100% on the day. As #TeamSteve captain Steve Harding says, "The bike ride went really well with every rider crossing the finishing line, which is great and a credit to them all". It was truly an amazing effort by all the riders, a wonderful bunch of people, some of whom had traveled a long way to be part of the ride. We appreciate them all giving up their time to support a great cause.
Dedication & Commitment from all
A few team members deserve particular mention for their efforts. First Brett, who suffered a setback in training just a week before the day of the ride. It was touch and go whether Brett would be able to complete the grueling 100 miles, but his determination was admirable. After seeking advice on everything from footwear to fluid intake, nothing was going to stop him completing the whole 100 miles...which he did in style, crossing the line with fellow #TeamSteve rider Charlotte Fortnum-Price.
Second, we must say a big well done to Charlotte. Charlotte is a seasoned runner and fitness coach, and although she's not unaccustomed to two wheels, it's not her strong suit. Charlotte completed the ride on a Hybrid bike, which are not as fast or as suited to the roads as the bikes the other guys were using. Nevertheless she posted a superb time and was an invaluable member of the cycling team. Thank you Charlotte!
Finally a MASSIVE thank you to Ben Haining. He was the star of the whole show, helping to organise everything including accommodation at the George Hotel in Colchester the night before the ride. Ben organised the shirts and water bottles, the hotel for the non Ipswich riders, the 3 course meal for all riders, the ride itself as well as the banners and car adverts that we used to promote the Foundation. We think he might also have had a hand in the good weather on the day but we can't be 100% sure about that! Thank you Ben, you did the riders, the Foundation and Nino Severino proud.
And the winner is...
The main reason for taking part in the Charity Bike Ride was, of course, to ensure that Bally's vision of access to tennis facilities and coaching for all kids is given the support it deserves...but we'd be lying if we said there wasn't a little bit of healthy competition between #TeamBen and #TeamSteve on the day, so here's the order that the guys finished in. Ben Jacobs and Eric Searle finished first, followed by Steve harding and James. All of Ben's team and Jamie Friend were next to finish with Brett and Charlotte close behind them. All of which means that #TeamBen get bragging rights this time around...but I'm sure there will be many more chances for #TeamSteve to even up the score.
Finally a big thanks to everyone who lent their support by donating to the Foundation, it's much appreciated. You can find out more about the work the Foundation does on our website and social media channels.
To donate to the Elena Baltacha Foundation visit our Just Giving page.