Cosham teen Callum tackles London to Brighton ride to raise cash for humanitarian trip

Callum Smart. Picture: Malcolm Wells
Callum Smart. Picture: Malcolm Wells
From left: Lacey Sheppard, Leo Beech, Vanya Karim and Imogen Chapman make a final check on their vehicle ' 'Picture: Malcolm Wells (180613-3560)

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SCHOOLBOY Callum Smart is determined nothing will stand in his way as he looks to tackle a gruelling 54-mile cycle ride over the weekend.

The 14-year-old Cosham lad is set join thousands of people taking on the London to Brighton ride on Sunday.

It’s the latest event in his quest to raise £4,500 to pay for a four-week humanitarian trip to Borneo in 2019, which will see him help to build schools and teach young children English.

He’s already raised almost half of the total so far, working as a paperboy for The News, as well as doing gardening jobs, selling cakes, packing bags, washing cars and even working as an FA-qualified football referee.

Now he hopes his latest venture will help him to reach the finish line of his fundraising quest – a year early.

The Year 9 Purbrook Park School pupil, of Hilary Avenue, said: ‘I know I will be able to get through the ride.

‘I don’t want to not do it because people have been donating to me. I know I can do it.’

And to help spur him on, Callum has enlisted the help of his dad Gavin, 41, and grandad Graham, 68, of Gosport, to join him on ride.

The trio will all set off from London side by side – on Father’s Day.

Gavin tackled the route in 2009 and knows how tough it can be but was proud to help his son’s fundraising quest.

He said: ‘When Callum said to me he wanted to participate in camp Borneo we asked him on a number of occasions whether he was sure as we knew there’d be a lot of hard work to raise the money.

‘Callum was sure and while it’s been hard work I honestly believe that he will look back with a sense of accomplishment when he finally make shis target.’

He added: ‘I’m really looking forward to completing the London to Brighton with three generations of the Smarts.

‘My dad has been taking the training really seriously so I suspect I will be the one lagging behind.’

Callum has been training for months to build his fitness and even tackled a challenging 35-mile ride while on holiday in Holland in May.

Speaking of the Borneo trip, the teen added: ‘This is going to be a really rewarding experience, it will be the trip of a lifetime.

‘I’m only going to do this once in my lifetime, heading out to Borneo and helping the locals.

‘I just really want to help the people in Borneo.’

Mum Julie, 42, added: ‘I’m just so proud of everything Callum is doing. It’s amazing.’

To sponsor Callum, see justgiving.com/crowdfunding/callumsmartborneo2019 or for updates on his fundraising, search ‘Callum Smart Borneo Expedition 2019’ on Facebook.