Perilous trip awaits cycling brothers

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From the bear infested mountains to frozen peaks, two brothers are embarking on the adventure of a lifetime to raise money for charity.

Chris and Stuart Marshall will be setting off from their homes in Ambergate before pedalling 10,000 miles on their trusty bikes to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, at the end of the month.

Along the way, the pair will encounter some of the harshest cycling terrains on Earth as they journey through Europe, central Asia, China, and South East Asia during a six-month expedition.

The pair’s daunting adventure is all in aid of TEACH (Time to Educate Africa’s Children), with 100 per cent of the donations raised going straight to the charity, as the trip is fully self-supported by their own hard work.

Stuart, 21, said: “We aim to do it the hard way! And we say ‘hard’ because we’re purposely avoiding some of the relative flats and warmth of the Middle East to tackle some of the toughest terrains and harshest weather conditions possible.

“I think going on this trip will be a great experience that will expand my mind, enhance my rehabilitation skills as we will inevitably get some niggles and injuries and give me the life skills that can not be obtained from university or a game show. We aim to hit five mega-harsh obstacles.”

Among the destinations on their route are The Austrian Alps; the Steppes of Kazakhstan, where there is no civilisation for hundreds of miles; the 4,500-metre high passes of the Tien Shan Mountains; the Taklamakan desert in Northern China, where temperatures range from -20 Celsius at night, to 40 Celsius in the day and the sprawling, humid forest mountains of Sichuan and Yunnan provinces in Southern China.

However, Chris, 22, said it was worth facing the perilous conditions in order to raise as much cash as possible for TEACH, for whom he has been working as an intern for the last six months.

“It’s fantastic that we’re doing this ride for such a great cause,” Chris said. “TEACH are an amazing, frontline charity. Every donation made goes directly to alleviating poverty through the power of education.”

The brothers are encouraging local people to take on a much shorter cycle journey to show support for their epic fundraising trip.

On Wednesday, July 18, all ages and abilities are being urged to join in a three-mile race from the Triangle in Belper to the brothers’ house in Ambergate.

Chris added: “There will be two separate competitions – for cyclists and non-cyclists - if you have lycras, you’re a cyclist! Each winner will receive a prize.

“The Time Trial will start at 6.40pm on the night, and so we kindly ask all riders to get to the Triangle for no later than 6.30pm. Entry is £5 per rider, but we welcome any and all extra donations, as 100 per cent of the money will go directly to TEACH.”

Anyone wanting to pledge a donation to the cause or for more information on the brothers’ trip in aid of the charity, visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/