Last week we reported on the remarkable 113-mile ride from Northampton to Tower Bridge in London being undertaken by a remarkable six-year-old, Edward Dyster, to raise money for The Donna Louise Children's Hospice Trust after being inspired by a talk at his school in Stone, Staffordshire about their work with terminally ill children.
Well, he made it and then some. Over the weekend we heard from Edward's mum Emma who told us that not only did Edward ride his 113 miles – in fact he'd knocked that off the day before he reached Tower Bridge, dad Steve having forgotten to factor in the distance from their route to the overnight stops… dads, eh?
Edward ended up riding 150 miles and was fresh enough at the end to insist on riding back to the family car for the journey home. He's already planning a bigger trip, telling his parents that although it had been harder than he'd thought he would now like to ride from Tower Bridge to the Eiffel Tower, or in his own words "that metal tower in Paris". His mum has advised him that it's good to have dreams "but we need to have a bit of a rest first."
Anyone who has ever ridden any distance with a young child, even one as keen on cycling as Edward, will know what a feat his ride is – he covered upwards of 24 miles a day through typically miserable British bank holiday weather. Plenty of young cyclists would be happy to ride that mileage for one day, but the novelty would certainly start to pale after that, especially in the rain.
Aside from the support of well-wishers including roadcc users (yes, he heard about our story last week) Edward put his success down to his refuelling strategy. Like most athletes he relied on a diet rich in essential proteins, fats and sugars… in his case raw sugar and sausages – 18 of them by Tuesday, a number worthy of respect, even without the bike ride.
Edward Dyster... sausage-powered
The journey from Northampton, where Edward was born, to London was carried out on a mainly traffic-free route, and mum Emma told roadcc: “Our little man has done very well but it would not have been possible without the National Cycle Network and indeed I am impressed that you can ride a child in relative safety from the Midlands to the Heart of one of the busiest cities in Europe,” adding, “you cannot beat a bank holiday’s weather though!”
Well, Edward did beat the weather, and long before he arrived in London, he had beaten the £1,000 fundraising target on his Just Giving page – the total currently stands at £1,500 and of course donations are still being accepted following completion of the ride by an inspirational child himself inspired by other inspirational children.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.