Fundraiser Brings Tour de France Home to Smash Target

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We share Michael Gate’s incredible story, cycling the Tour de France equivalent whilst raising incredible funds for Lancashire Mind.

We couldn’t do what we do without fundraisers like ours.

It sounds cliché but we mean it… each and every time.

Michael Gates is no different. Michael, who has been training for four years to take part in the Tour de France 2020, was diverted from his goal by the pandemic earlier this year when it was cancelled in April.

And like many of our fundraisers, his ability to remain focused on his challenge was incredible and so he began planning his Tour with a Lancashire edge.

The Road to Victory

The 2,156 mile challenge was by no means easy planning but soon his journey was set with the stages being as follows:

4th July 106 miles —- 5th July 118 miles —- 6th July 123 miles

7th July 98 miles —- 8th July 114 miles —- 9th July 119 miles

10th July 104 miles —- 11th July 87 miles —- 12th July 96 miles

13th July Rest day —- 14th July 106 miles —- 15th July 104 miles

16th July 135 miles —- 17th July 119 miles —- 18th July 122 miles

19th July 109 miles —- 20th Rest day —- 21st July 102 miles

22nd July 104 miles —- 23rd July 104 miles —- 24th July 99 miles

25th July 22 miles Mountain Time Trial —- 26th July 76 miles

Hero with a Cause

So why raise money for Lancashire Mind? Michael said on his Just Giving page:

”I feel I should use this opportunity to raise money for Lancashire Mind as I have seen the heartbreaking effects of mental illness and suicide on the lives of several of my friends in my cycling and working life. I would like to raise awareness of mental wellbeing, and feel Lancashire Mind can put donations to good use to support those in our community.”

And so, stage by stage, Michael worked through twenty-one grueling stages of Lancashire terrain to complete the newly named ‘Teacake’s Tour Plan B’.

Word traveled of Michael’s mission and was soon featured on Radio Lancashire’s Sally Naden show.

Listen again here

Quoting as saying how ‘sad’ he was for finishing, he was able to tick the ‘personal ambition’ off his bucket list. Often with fundraising challenges of this scale, we often hear of the trials that accompany such awe-inspiring acts of selflessness. After all, they say it is the journey itself, of getting through it, where you find growth and true grit, and not simply about the A-Z.

Michael kindly allowed shared some of his milestones and achievements with us:

✔ 21 Stages
✔ 2 Rest Days
✔ Total Distance 2198.01 miles
✔ Time 140hrs 58mins 7 secs
✔ Total Elevation 112786ft (equivalent of 3.8 times up Everest)
✔ Avg Speed 16.8 mph
✔ Total Calories 111204

✔ Had to change one rear Continental GP5000 worn through after just 2000 miles
✔ One set of rear brake disc pads after 2000 miles
✔ 3 punctures with 2 happening on the first day

✔ Consumed 21 wagon wheels jammy ones
✔ 21 rice crispy bars
✔ 42 salami and humus sandwiches
✔ 3 emergency Mars bars

Going Above and Beyond

With an initial Just Giving target of £100, the total quickly climbed with the amount raised (at time of publish) to a staggering £1,780.

Michael, we are so thankful for every mile, every turn of the wheel, every salami and humus sandwich. You are a true advocate for mental health awareness and we are so proud to call you part of the fundraising team.

From all of us here at Lancashire Mind…. thank you!

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