SADDLING up for a major fundraising challenge, these women are getting ready to go the distance – and then some.
In its third year, the On Yer Bike for Oaks event, will see 60 women cycle 150 miles to Newhaven, in East Sussex, and back.
The fundraising challenge, which used to only run for 100 miles, has been put on to raise money for the Oakley Waterman Caravan Foundation, and participants hope to beat last year’s total of £20,000.
Hayley Waterman, 32, is the aunt of Oakley Waterman, who died in 2005 from a rare form of cancer, aged only six.
Oakley’s last wish was to spend time in a caravan holiday park, and that a caravan was bought so other children could enjoy time their with families.
The foundation has bought two caravans, in Pagham and in Devon.
Hayley, a health visitor, of Harding Road, Gosport, said: ‘This is the third year we have done this, the last two were 100-miles.
‘We decided to make it more of a challenge so are going to Newhaven, and back.
‘Next year will be Oakley’s 10-year anniversary, and we want to raise enough money to replace one of the old caravans.
‘People have paid to cover the cost of their food and hotel stay, so we won’t take any money from the foundation.
‘We will be cycling for 10 hours on two days.’
The event takes place on July 26, and starts at 8am outside the The Masonic Hall in Gosport.
The cyclists will then be heading to Church Farm Holiday Park, in Sussex, where one of Oakley’s caravans is situated.
They will ride a lap of the park then continue on their journey to Newhaven.
The fundraisers will then stay overnight in a hotel, before heading back to the Masonic Hall, for a celebration with friends and family.
Jacqui Camp, 48, of Oval Gardens, in Gosport, has been taking part for the past two years.
She said: ‘We met the Waterman family about six years ago, and when we heard about Oakley, we wanted to get involved and help.
‘The cycle ride is hard work, and each time I always say it’s going to be my last.
‘Last year we went to Worthing and back. It always feels more tough on the way back.
‘It’a just such a good cause though, and I want to support it.’
To donate, visit theoakleywatermancaravanfoundation.org