march diary
 

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Ben Nevis

 

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Scafell Pike

 

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updates

29 January - we've done the London to Cambridge Cycle Ride four years running, and we've been thinking about what we can do that's different this year. Between the two Chris's and Peter Reynolds, The Red Pouches 3 Peaks Challenge is born ! We decide on a date - 25th & 26th July 2009 which just happens to be the same weekend of the London to Cambridge Cycle Ride - that way we won't be tempted to default to doing the cycle ride again

4 February - invitations go out to last year's Red Pouches - in no time at all, the Challenge is accepted by the vast majority of last year's team. Some can't make it because of holiday commitments, others because they've committed to do the London to Cambridge Cycle Ride again.

15 February - with 13 confirmed participants, we open the invitations further afield, and advertise the Challenge for others to join in. There's a bit of interest, but this is not a Challenge for the faint of heart !

6 March - the final Team is announced. We've decided to stick to 16 climbers and 2 drivers - this gives us the right balance for travelling between the Peaks, and will allow everyone to get a decent night's sleep after the effort of Ben Nevis, on the drive to Scafell Pike. Our team is confirmed as:

Chris Welsh, Lynn McGhee, Mark Benton, Craig Abbs, Paul Blacktop, Steve Ratcliff, Peter Reynolds, Paul Taylor, Alec Pybus, Peter Ford, Phil Barnard, Simon Crow, Andy Atkinson, Jason Mansfield, Matt Fisher and Steven Card. Chris Clingham and Dave Roach are confirmed as expedition drivers.

9 March - Jason Mansfield is now unfortunately unable to take part, and so the gap left by him needs filling. Martin Binks, one of last year's Red Pouches cyclists and initially undecided about the Challenge, says Yes, Count me in. The Team is back up to full strength.

12 March - we invite two reserve climbers to join our ranks, just in case. Welcome Tim Blake and Richard Brusell. Preparations continue - there's lots of information being shared amongst the Team - details on boots, maps, preparation and practicing is the main conversation topics.

12 March - we have our group navigators ! Thanks to Alec Pybus and Steve Ratcliff for putting themselves forward for this. Alec has already kindly bought all the maps we need for the Challenge so he can get some practice in. Thanks for getting those Alec - the Team can see what's in store for each peak by clicking the links on the left.

We've also had some great feedback from two of the Team on boots - Matt Fisher has found these boots massively reduced in Sports Direct and Paul Taylor has found a good range of boots at Simpers of Cambridge. Thanks for the feedback, guys.

17 March - how quickly things change. We have today learnt that Mark Benton is no longer able to take part in the Challenge, but he will be doing the London to Cambridge Cycle Ride, and will still be raising money for our two charities, Arthur Rank Hospice and East Anglia Children's Hospice. Sorry you can't make it Mark, but well done for doing the cycle ride, and still raising lots of money for charity. So .... welcome Tim Blake ! You're not No 1 reserve anymore ..... you're in the Team.

17 March - sponsorship forms have been shared with the Team, but if you need to print more, here's your link to the form.

18 March - Nooo ! We've lost another one ! Come on guys .... at this rate we'll be down to nobody taking part within the next week or so. Late yesterday we heard that Phil Barnard was having to drop out. Sorry to hear that Phil - you'll be missed. Time to dig into the dwindling reserve list again, so let's welcome Richard Brusell to the team - nice one Rich !

Our team now looks like this:

Chris Welsh, Lynn McGhee, Tim Blake, Craig Abbs, Paul Blacktop, Steve Ratcliff, Peter Reynolds, Paul Taylor, Alec Pybus, Peter Ford, Richard Brusell, Simon Crow, Andy Atkinson, Martin Binks, Matt Fisher and Steven Card. Chris Clingham and Dave Roach are our drivers.

Okay, guys, that's enough now ! No more dropping out allowed !

More news from today - having sent the sponsor forms out only last night, let's hear a huge cheer for Lynn McGhee who secured her 100 target by 10.21 this morning.... well done you, and a lesson to us all.

19 March - Good news today - we've had nobody else drop out of the Challenge, in fact we've had two more people put themselves forward as reserves which is good news. Mark Pleasance from the Engineering team at Cambridge Mail Centre, and Rob from the Quadrant Restaurant are our new reserves - well done to you.

Even better news from today - it's great to see the competitive spirit developing in some of the Team. Having celebrated Lynn hitting her target on the first day of getting sponsorship yesterday, we quickly learned that Andy Atkinson surpassed that achievement in spectacular fashion. In just three hours yesterday, Andy secured pledges exceeding 250 !! That's absolutely fantastic, but boy are you in trouble now, Andy ! Lynn has declared sponsorship war and may the best woman win !

Also today - Mark Benton started collecting pledges from his customers for his London to Cambridge Cycle Ride. Let's not forget Mark's still a Red Pouches man, and this year is our lone representative in the Cycle Ride, so good luck to you Mark !

Wonder what tomorrow will bring ?

23 March - reports are coming in that one of the team went for a walk around Rutland Water over the weekend for some distance conditioning ! Eighteen miles is a good bit of preparation, but he quickly realised that even these distances are not easily achieved. He quickly became aware that he has a lot more to do in preparation for the big event ! Guys - this is tough stuff ! If we're not in suitable condition to do this, then we put ourselves and the rest of the team at risk. WE MUST PREPARE OURSELVES !! and thankfully we still have time to do this. Keep plugging away in the gym and on the long walks. Hills come next.

25 March - the sponsorship war took a new turn today. Having made a great start in securing her 100 target in the first couple of hours, Lynn McGhee lost quite a bit of ground to Andy Atkinson who streaked past her with a great 250 on day 1. We were all really impressed with both achievements.

Well ...... today Lynn proudly announced that she's reached 480 - "eat my dust" is the message to Andy ! Andy's response - Game On ! I've just started Chip and PIN !

Ten minutes later - Lynn had hit 505 - fantastic !

Finally today, we started publicising ourselves on the East Anglia Area intranet website - an article has gone out in the East Anglia News, and more sponsorship is starting to trickle in through Just Giving. First person to answer our call for support was Debbie Coxford in Thetford, closely followed by Chas Barnes in Ipswich. Thanks to both of you, and let's hope that more answer the call.

26 March - NEWS FLASH ! Lynn's up to 580 ! You've got some serious catching up to do, Andy - that'll teach you to go on leave ! Lynn thinks it's Game, Set and Match. What's the response going to be ?

 

30 March - We've received a massive anonymous boost in our sponsorship today which takes our current total to 2054. This is great news ! Given this new development, and the rate of current donations, we're reviewing our target total, and now want to raise 4,000 for the two charities. Given that we still have 4 months before we do the event, this should be within our scope. Well done to everyone who's pulling the money in already.

 

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