Spinning up a frenzy among shoppers for our Blue Day event

READY TO RIDE From left, Paul Gamble, Jon Jennings, Tim Green and Mark Tucker
READY TO RIDE From left, Paul Gamble, Jon Jennings, Tim Green and Mark Tucker

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A GROUP of lads are taking on a huge cycling challenge to raise money for Blue Day in memory of their close friend Tom Prince.

Tim Green, 21, Paul Gamble, 21, Jon Jennings, 21 and Marc Tucker, 29, all from Southsea, will hit the spinning machines for a testing two-day endurance ride lasting a total of 16 hours.

And all the while they will be raising cash for the Tom Prince Cancer Trust.

The friends will take it in two-hour shifts to cycle on the two machines from 9am to 5pm in Cascades Shopping Centre on Saturday May 7 and Sunday May 8 – the weekend after our blue bonanza on May 6, held in aid of the trust.

Organiser Tim, who was one of Tom’s closest friends at school, said: ‘It’s a massive challenge, even on our two hours off we’re not really going to get a break because we’ll be collecting donations for Blue Day during that time.

‘We have been doing a lot of training and every time it gets tough, I just think about Tom.

‘I was really close to him the whole way through his treatment, and saw how he pushed on through 18 months of that – a two-day bike ride is nothing in comparison.

‘He really is an inspiration to everyone who knew him, that’s why it’s important we all do everything we can to help keep his spirit alive.’

As well as collecting personal sponsors, the group has also sold patches on their T-shirts to local businesses for £50 each and have already raised £500 from the sale of these patches alone.

This is the fifth Blue Day and as always all money raised will go to the Tom Prince Cancer Trust, set up in 2004 by Tom’s family shortly after his death from teenage bone cancer, osteosarcoma.

His mum Adele, dad Clinton and sister Emma hope to raise £1m through the trust to fund research into the disease and have generated £580,000 so far – £150,000 from the previous four Blue Days.

In aid of the cause, the entrepreneurial foursome will be sporting the logos of A1 Security Alarms, Aqua Cars, B&Q Portsmouth, Bar 50-Six, Birthdays Portsmouth, Cameron Davies Opticians, Cascades Shopping Centre, Fitness First Fareham, Fitness First Portsmouth, Goodwins Framing, Kingfisher Fish and Chip, Meon Milton Youth FC, Scope Bodyshop and Vintage Pig.

All have supported the event by buying a patch on one of the T-shirts.

To take part in the charity bonanza, register your event at tomprince.co.uk