Friday, 30 August 2013

"Energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be changed from one form to another" - Albert Einstein

Having studied Sports Nutrition at University and completing a dissertation on energy drinks, I know all too well the importance of staying hydrated and fuelled in order to keep the legs turning on the bike.

This is why from the start, I've been concerned about how we are going to keep the CCC2CC team of riders topped up and as fresh as possible.
I'm not too sure how many calories we will be burning each day, but we will need to consume lots and lots of carbs and fluid to keep going. As soon as you hit the wall, its difficult to get back on the bike and up to the required average speed of approximately 6kph.
We may all have trail packs, but it was always going to be a challenging trade off to keep these as light as possible while carrying enough fluid and fuel - not to mention the spares and first aid equipment we will have to carry.

We are very grateful to have our support team, who will be tracking our progress and meeting us every 10-15 miles so that we can top up on supplies (and will also be on hand if there are any injuries!!). Without them, there is no way that this would be possible.
However, we then came across another dilemma... stocking the support team!

Thats where Mitchells and Butlers Brewery and UES Energy stepped in.

Firstly, Mitchells and Butlers Brewery, who run many of the UK’s most famous restaurant and pub brands, donated 720 500ml bottles of water.

Then, UES Energy, a specialist independent energy consultancy based in South Wales , donated 240 High 5 Zero tabs and 150 High 5 Iso Gel 60ml sachets.

Not only are we grateful that these companies have stepped up to support the CCC2CC, we are also relieved as it is one less thing for us to worry about.... we can concentrate on watching the ground roll by.

I genuinely can't wait for the 23rd September now as everything seems to be falling into place nicely. We've all been training hard and getting the miles in, our accommodation is booked, the transport to North Wales has been arranged and our bikes are being lovingly prepped and tweaked and fettled (we are mountain bikers after all!).

All we really need is your support and donations as these will really motivate us to get moving when the going is tough and get up early in the morning when our bodies are tired...

If you can spare a bit of change, please go to

- Ben

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Never Underestimate the Kindness of Strangers

As the day of the ride looms ever closer, one thing has stood out so far in everything we have had to do regarding the ride, the willingness of people to help us in our aim to help Cancer Research UK.

I was reminded of just how much people have volunteered their time, resources and even their hard earned cash, whilst watching an episode of D.I.Y. S.O.S. this evening. It was a moving tale of a community helping to rebuild a terminally ill man's home to leave a legacy and a safe future for his family after his passing. They were struck at how people that didn't know him but came to hear of his story all came together to help, because they wanted to. Over this past week I have been overwhelmed with the support we have been shown by people, just because they want to help.

I'm not going to name any names in this blog, but I'm sure those reading it will either recognise themselves in it, or will think "yeah, I can help in that way too" but in no way am I listing these things in any order of gratitude or merit, we have been touched by every offer of help we have received.

Putting on a ride of this magnitude doesn't come cheap, especially given the numbers of us riding, but it does give us a platform to not only raise money for Cancer Research UK but also to spread awareness so every penny is a penny well spent. We have been helped enormously by the willingness to assist us by some of the companies and organisations we have either approached, or have approached us and offered vital equipment and resources, contacts and advice. This week alone has seen us go from having no energy food and water to having to plan out how we are going to distribute it to fit it all in the support vehicle.  I also had a good conversation with a guy from one particular organisation who almost every time we have had a problem to sort, has offered us a solution or a contact. We even had one of our sponsors so desperate to show his support that he drove half the length of the country and broke his body riding with us on a training day. Some of these guys are people that we may work for, or with, or know through the mountain biking community, but some are not, they are just people who have seen what we are trying to achieve and offered their help, and for that we are most grateful.

Some of this sponsorship has come as a direct result of people finding out about the challenge through social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and indeed this blog. We have been blown away that our Twitter followers have risen from being in the 20's a couple of weeks ago, to well over ten times that today, and growing at a rate of knots. We have had new followers who have never met us, tirelessly retweeting us and campaigning to spread our challenge to other potential new followers day in day out. This has helped us to reach an audience we never would have thought of to seek, bringing in sponsorship and help we would never have had otherwise.Thank you so much for your efforts to promote the Crudcatcher Challenge

There is no denying that one of our key aims has been to raise money to help fund the vital work that the guys at Cancer Research do, we are so grateful to everyone who has dug deep and sponsored or will sponsor our ride. The money raised is going to a wonderful cause and will help fund lifesaving research and treatment that will help so many people.

My final thank you is to every single member of Team Crud. In January I posted a simple idea on a forum to help support another member leave a legacy for her late mother, a week later we had a team of 16 booked up and ready for whatever the challenge threw at them. Since then they haven't stopped rising to the challenge and have worked tirelessly to promote what we are doing, train, help organise, raise money and advise one another. None of us know what we have let ourselves in for, but what I know is that whatever it is, as a team we will tackle it with pride and determination. If you haven't already supported these guys, then please show your appreciation for their efforts by giving a few quid to the challenge and Cancer Research. Its easy to do to, you are in the right place, you just need to click on the donate link at the top of the page or visit I may be riding with these guys, but I will be sponsoring them, because I am proud of every one of them, so please, let them know you are proud too

Thank you, thank you, thank you.