At a presentation held recently at the Hull based head office of leading UK bodybuilder Paneltex, three Paneltex employees handed over a cheque for £4256.88 to Katie Wood representing local charity Dove House Hospice, with the money being raised as a result of a charity cycle challenge held last year.
Phil Carrick, Andy Murphy and Simon Beecroft undertook a cycling challenge in France as part of the L’Etape du Tour, an event which was first established in 1993 to allow amateur cyclists to test their legs on the route of one of the mountain stages in the Tour de France. This challenge, now in its 22nd year, has become the reference race for cyclosportive riders from all over the world.
Phil, Andy and Simon joined a staggering 13,500 other entrants, riding in temperatures exceeding 30°C , as they attempted to conquer the torturous climbs of the Tour, with the cycle challenge covering the last mountain stage of the 100th Tour de France. Replicating Stage 20 of the 2013 Tour de France, the Etape started from Annecy and finished in Semnoz.
The course was a classic Alpine stage, taking in the climbs of the Cote du Puget (796m), Col de Leschaux (944m), Col des Pres (1142m) Mont Revard (1463m) culminating with a final climb up to Semnoz (1655m). Over 10,600 of the original starting participants, including the three-man Paneltex team, finally completed the gruelling course, a record for the event.
According to Paneltex’s Phil Carrick, "As we approached the last climb, with extremely tired legs, this was by far the hardest part of the course, but the support and sponsorship kept us all focused, knowing that our cycle challenge was nothing compared to those who are unfortunate enough to need the services of Dove House Hospice. "
This charity challenge is one of many undertaken over the years by staff at Paneltex and is part of the close association between the Hull manufacturer and Dove House Hospice. Dove House in Hull is a charity providing excellent care for people in the local community with life limiting illnesses and it is the only adult hospice in the area serving a population of 325,000.