East Lancashire Hospice | Covering Blackburn, Darwen, Accrington and Clitheroe areas

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'Daredevil' cyclist raises £1700 in 12,000 km race

A daredevil cyclist attempted a 12,000 km race raising over £1,700 for East Lancashire Hospice.

Paul Taylor, 47, from Hoddlesden has previously climbed Everest to raise hospice funds, but his latest challenge appealed to him because it is less well known.

The Cairo to Cape Town challenge, known as the Tour D’Afrique cycles through 10 countries. It takes about 3 months to complete with competitors camping on most nights. The race covers 11,500 km and includes 90 riding days and 29 rest days. Awards are given to the fastest riders on stages and sections throughout the race.

Unfortunately Mr Taylor had to return to England for work so did not get to complete the full route, but hopes to return to finish.

He said: “I've completed a lot of endurance challenges but I decided to take this on because it's not the usual – I liked the idea that not many people had done it. I averaged about 100 miles a day and most was on dirt tracks, so it was very challenging. I completed 42 race stages over 60 days winning 37 of the stages and all the sections but decided to return without finishing as it took longer than I was hoping for. I hope to go back and finish it, possibly next year. I’d like to thank everyone for their donations and support from friends, family and my work partner Jason.”

The route begins in Egypt and passes through Sudan, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Kenya, Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa where the race is completed.

Mr Taylor is also competing in the Bolton Ironman this Sunday and the Amsterdam marathon in October.

Anyone wishing to take on a challenge to raise hospice funds can call 01254 287012.