Cycle Challenges – Newcastle to London in 24 Hours

Yes, I know this blog is normally about copywriting, marketing and social media, but I hope you’ll forgive this one transgression.

When I’m not working as a copywriter, I’m a keen cyclist (possibly the fastest copywriter on wheels?) and a volunteer with the Make A Wish Foundation.

This year I was given the opportunity to combine the two – cycling and Make A Wish supporting.

It was challenge that involved cycling from Newcastle to London, 300 miles in 24 hours – non-stop, organised by RIDEUK24.

RIDEUK24 cycle challenge

The smiles at the start line were in spite of the ominous looking black clouds that were gathering overhead. We kidded ourselves that it would stay dry, but soon realised that was pie in the sky when, after only 10 miles, the heavens opened and it didn’t stop until we reached London.

The first 123 miles or so went well. Although I cycled much of it on my own, I managed to average just under 18 mph. But then the sun started to fade.

cycling in the rain

The night cycling stages were horrendous. I did stay with a group, but cycling in the pitch black with only a small amount of light from our bike lights breaking through the gloom, was terrifying. The rain wasn’t helping and the lower temperatures meant we all started getting very cold.

I was pleased to see the sun come up (well, the light, still couldn’t see the sun because of the cloud), an hour or so into stage 6 although I began to flag as exhaustion was really starting to kick in.

After a quick stop at Buntingford for some food, I got back on my bike for the final 34 miles into London. Boy, is cycling in London scary!

food stop

I was so relieved to see the finish line and even more relieved to see I’d completed the challenge in 23 hours and 15 minutes.


The organisation by RIDEU24 was amazing. The food stops (of which there were 6) provided everything we needed, including somewhere to get out of the rain. There were medics and mechanics on hand if needed, making all the riders feel very supported.

But the best part of all was my fabulous husband who stayed with me most of the way round. After seeing me off at the start, he drove to various locations on the course to cheer me on and was then at every food stop (bar one, so he could get some sleep) to give me some much needed encouragement – especially in the early hours when I was (still) soaked, cold and tried and ready to give up.

Thankfully, just before the ride we discovered the Life360 app, which meant he could track me (through my phone) throughout the event, so he could find me along the route.

All in all it was an amazing experience. It’s now 2 days on and I’m pleased to say most of the aches and pains have gone, although I’m still very tired.

Everyone has been incredibly generous, helping me raise (to date) £1362 for Make A Wish, which is way beyond what I had hoped to achieve.

What’s next?

Well, I don’t have another crazy charity event lined up just yet, but I do only have 2 weeks before my next 100 mile sportive, closely followed by another 2 weeks after that.

Thanks for allowing me to ramble on off topic. Normal service will now be resumed.




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