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Newmarket 24-hour Great Racing Welfare Cycle challenge set to be a winner for town-based racing charity





A charity cycle event is heading to Newmarket this summer and local riders are being invited to join in.

The 24-hour Great Racing Welfare Cycle challenge will start at noon on July 20 at Newmarket’s Rowley Mile racecourse, which will be the cyclists’ base throughout the event.

It will finish the following day, when there will be a barbecue and celebration for all participants and their families.

Gemma Waterhouse, operations manager at Racing Welfare, the town-based charity which will benefit from a cycle challenge this summer
Gemma Waterhouse, operations manager at Racing Welfare, the town-based charity which will benefit from a cycle challenge this summer

The planned route of 32km will take in numerous historic landmarks around the town and surrounding areas, with residents invited to take part in the team event alongside a number of racing personalities.

Gemma Waterhouse, chief operating officer for Newmarket-based charity Racing Welfare, said: What I’m undoubtedly most excited about is hosting this year’s event in Newmarket, the home of horseracing and also the home of our head office.

“Teams can include from four to eight people which means you can make it as easy or hard as you like. For those hardcore challenge seekers you can complete the 24 hours with just four people riding in pairs with two people on the track at all times while two people rest.

“For those looking for a lighter challenge you can split the 24 hours between four pairs with each taking a slice of the 24 hours – the ultimate relay challenge.”

The event first took place in its current 24-hour format two years ago at Cheltenham racecourse, raising more than £125,000 in vital funds for the charity when participants included Sir Anthony McCoy and Classic winning jockey Oisin Murphy.

Newmarket trainer Kevin Philippart de Foy also took on the Cheltenham renewal and is set to take part again this year. He said he was looking forward to tackling the flatter landscape of Newmarket.

“It was a great experience two years ago. I still have the sticker – you can see I have not used the bike in a few years! I hope it’s a bit easier in Newmarket than Cheltenham was.”

And William Knight, of Rathmoy Stables, is another who has pledged his support for the challenge. He said: “It’s a great charity and bringing it to Newmarket and expanding the size of the teams means we can make it work around racing. I’m just pulling my team together now.”

Anyone interested in taking part can contact Jo White on jwhite@racingwelfare.co.uk or 07788 868882 or visit racingwelfare.co.uk for further information.