The big day approaches…

It seems like yesterday that I was writing a blog entitled “127 days to go” yet here we are with just 3 days until the Ride2Raise challenge kicks off. And there’s still lots to do with kit to arrive, hotel arrangements to be made, vehicles to be prepared, certificates to be printed, bikes to be serviced and so on. The work the team at Fundraising Media has done has been incredible and I’d like to recognise the huge contribution that George and Tim have made. Very simply, without their hard work and creative and organisational input there wouldn’t be a Ride2Raise 2010.

For me this has been a personal challenge to get myself physically fit to ride. For long periods a knee injury meant I didn’t expect to be able to do more than a few miles each day, before jumping in the support vehicle for an ice pack and cappuccino. But hard work and some revolutionary treatment from my sports doctor Mike Bundy (www.puresportsmed.com) put me in a position where I could ride virtually pain free and I have finally, in the last 3-4 weeks, been able to get some miles in my legs. In fact, my recovery has been so good that I have been able to think I could be the Ride Manager I’d always wanted to be, leading from the front, supporting, motivating and helping the others.

But unfortunately the story doesn’t end there… and I’m now back on crutches with a badly bruised and irritated 5th metatarsal bone in my right foot (a stress fracture hasn’t been ruled out but is considered unlikely). I’m still trying to be positive but can’t help thinking that someone upstairs doesn’t like me much at the moment. Anna is continuing to give me amazing support, running around at home after Evie, Ollie and Hettie, while I rest, ice, massage and elevate the foot. And I’m liberally popping painkillers and Ibruprofen. My podiatrist (Sophie Roberts of The Gait Lab, www.thegaitlab.co.uk) is also making me up some emergency cycling orthotics for delivery on Friday in case the foot has settled enough for me to get a cycling shoe on by Saturday. She also makes them for Tour cyclist and green jersey winner Baden Cooke so I’m in good hands.

The generosity of our sponsors has been remarkable, as have the donations made by friends, family and even the readers of some of our magazines. And it will be fantastic at the end of this to make some really substantial donations to the charities that we’ve chosen to support, contributions that will make a real difference to literally hundreds of lives. And ultimately that’s what Ride2Raise is all about.

For anyone who wants to see us off, we start at 9.30am on Saturday at the top of Box Hill, Dorking next to the National Trust cafe. You can then follow our daily progress on Twitter.

Thanks, Richard

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