The name ?RACE Scotland? suggests an element of competition has entered the British Heart Foundation lexicon. In fact, this new charity ride in September (Friday-Sunday, 19th-21st) is a four-rider team relay, targeted at sportive riders wanting a challenge.
?Part of the challenge will be navigating the route themselves,? explained Alison Lunn of BHF Scotland. ?The event is not timed,? she added.
Starting from Gretna riders will cover 135 miles a day to clock up 400 miles by the finish at Scotland?s most northern tip, John O?Groats.
It?s a classic route through some of Scotland?s most dramatic scenery.
Day one starts from Gretna and goes via the Borders to Greenock and finishes on the "bonnie banks" of Loch Lomond, as the song goes.
Day two begins by riding the length of Loch Lomond, then via the mountains and past stunning Glen Coe to Fort William. Riders will have worked up a monster appetite for the finish along the banks of Loch Ness at Drumnadrochit.
The final day takes riders up the east coast, beyond Dornoch and into the hilly country around Helmsdale and the finish at John O?Groats.
RACE Scotland is open to 50 teams of four, plus helpers in a following vehicle, who will help navigate the route. Two riders from each team must be on the road at all times. It?s up to each team how often they change the relay.
Entry fee is £100 per person. This covers the cost of organisation and administration. In addition, each rider is expected to raise £250 for BHF research.
For details, contact BHF Scotland on 0800 028 7542. Or email: Scotland@bhf.org.uk
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Keith Bingham joined the Cycling Weekly team in the summer of 1971, and retired in 2011. During his time, he covered numerous Tours de France, Milk Races and everything in-between. He was well known for his long-running 'Bikewatch' column, and played a pivotal role in fighting for the future of once at-threat cycling venues such as Hog Hill and Herne Hill Velodrome.
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