In spring 2015, wealth manager James Maltin (pictured above), investment director at Rathbones at the time, was in the midst of an intense training programme. He was preparing to cycle the Tour de France one day ahead of the professional race.
Cut to this year and Maltin, who is on gardening leave, is back on the bike for a bigger, tougher and crazier cycling challenge. 10,504km to be completed in 63 days of cycling, to be precise.
Alongside former England and Crystal Palace footballer and blood cancer survivor, Geoff Thomas, and three other amateur cyclists, Doug McKinnon, Hayden Groves and Marcus Leach, Maltin will tackle the Three Tours Challenge.
The team will take on the Giro D’Italia, starting on 4 May, le Tour de France in July and La Vuelta a España in September, cycling them all one day ahead of the professional races.
From left to right: Doug McKinnon, Marcus Leach, James Maltin, Geoff Thomas, Hayden Groves
Each rider will burn 1,008,000 calories and will climb 66,000 metres. Only 39 professional riders have ever completed all three in one – no amateurs ever have – and we can see why.
Their aim is to raise an additional £1 million in 2017 to help the charity Cure Leukaemia fully fund the expansion of the Centre for Clinical Haematology at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.
The clinic has helped treat a huge number of patients, Thomas included. The expansion will mean the capacity for patients, clinical trials and specialist clinicians can double.
Speaking to Maltin, he said: ‘I feel great; it’s the fittest I’ve ever been. I’m going to take each day as it comes.’
Thomas also commented ahead of the challenge: 'We have been training extremely hard and with just days until we start we feel as ready as we can be for what lies ahead. It would not be possible to take on this challenge without the incredibly generous support of Farr Vintners which will allow us to raise significant funds towards Cure Leukaemia’s £1m Centre Appeal.'
We’ll be keeping up with the team and their progress. For the brave cyclists amongst you, you can cycle with them on a stage of the Tour de France. Take a look at the corporate packages available.
Or if you would like to show your support, please head to the JustGiving page.
Photo credit: Dave Hayward