Heatwave fails to put the brakes on international bike challenge for Louth cyclists

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How did you keep cool in the heatwave that recently swept the area?

We’re willing to bet a long, international bike ride wasn’t on your list - but that’s exactly what one brave group of Louth cyclists undertook.

Seventeen members from Pedal Power, a Louth spin group based at the Greyhound Pub, took to the road on their bikes on 24 July at 11am to being the 350-mile journey to Paris via Belgium - followed closely by a support van full of supplies

The group pedalled hard to Hull, where they caught a ferry to Zebrugge in Belgium, and then continued their mammoth journey.

To complicate matters, a record-breaking European heatwave coincided with their exertions, which saw temperatures rise to a sizzling 41 degrees.

However, the team kept smiles on their faces and their spirits up, as the ride was all in aid of Grimsby NSPCC - a group that campaigns tirelessly to eradicate child abuse and suffering in the local area.

The adventurous bunch completed their ride of a lifetime in just four days.

Pedal Power is owned and run by Sara Richards, who has been a qualified spin instructor for 23 years.

She said: “We left Louth for Hull, stopping for lunch at Hessle.

“We then took the ferry to Zebrugge - where it happened to be the hottest day on record.”

As well as getting used to cycling on the wrong side of the road, Sara said the main challenge was keeping hydrated, and the riders even had to stop and knock on doors for water as they were riding through Belgium, as the two bottles each rider had on board were swiftly drained.

Arriving at the Eiffel Tower was a ‘wonderful feeling’ - testament to the group’s grit and determination.

On the JustGiving page Pedal Power member Kim Hardcastle wrote: “This ride literally was all about blood, sweat and tears, but also friendship, positivity, guts and determination. Not forgetting the heroics of their support team, Zoe and Beccy.”

Pedal Power are close to reaching the £1,000 mark.

To donate, head to justgiving.com/fundraising/kim-hardcastle