Pictured Above:  Yes. Team photo

January saw preparations for the GM Fundraising Border2Border Cycling Challenge step up a gear. “With the ride only a few months away, the attention of the whole team is being focused on preparing for the upcoming challenge,” explains Gary Morton, founder of GM Fundraising and Rider on the B2B challenge. “All the riders will be increasing their training levels and official training schedules have been circulated.

“Although not obligatory, the riders are expected to attend three weekends of group training. The first takes place at Hope House in March, to remind us all for whom we are ultimately doing this. The second in Mallorca in April is to get us used to the different terrain and increased temperatures. The third, which is compulsory, takes place in the Peak District in May. We encourage everyone involved to attend these weekends so that we can learn to work as a team and build up some of the much talked about comradery that is so important in keeping everyone going through the toughest moments. And believe me, this ride is going to have some of the toughest.”

The first support team meeting, has also now taken place, which saw all the support team together for the first time on this ride and provided the perfect opportunity for the team to welcome the final member of the support crew on board, Chris Royall. Dave Broxton, Support Team Captain, comments: “When it comes to supporting the riders, our mantra is ‘plan for the worst – hope for the best’. The main topic of the meeting was the route and the difficulties day-by-day of supporting the riders without the things we now-days take for granted, like mobile coverage.

“Much of the ride will be taking place in the absolute wilderness of mountains and deserts. There are hardly any towns en-route so it is essential that each support vehicle knows all the emergency contacts and places for each stage of the ride. We will also be investing in Satellite phones which we hope never to use.”

Gary concludes: “The team has also turned to the all-important fundraising, the main reason this challenge is even taking place. The Team Profiles are now online and each person offers up an insight into their motivation, explaining what they are most looking forward to, and dreading, throughout the ride.

“Visit our website www.gmfundraising.co.uk/border2border, look out for posts on Facebook/gmfundraising and Twitter @gmfundraising sharing links to the team pages or follow #gmfb2b to see how the whole team are busy organising events and other challenges.”