It’s going to be a wheelie big challenge...

Having grown a moustache as part of a Reporter Series effort to raise money for Movember, I didn’t think it would be possible for me to look more ridiculous in a newspaper – then again, I hadn’t bargained on wearing lycra.

Saturday, 30th March 2013, 7:25 am
Joe Cooper raising money for the reporter series fund by cycling the Brian Robinson challenge in April.

On April 28, I’ll be riding the Brian Robinson Challenge – a Pennine cycling event starting in Huddersfield – to raise money for the Reporter Series Fund.

Wearing lycra is supposed to make you go faster – and I’m going to need the help. I’ll be riding the 75 mile route with my dad – who, despite being almost 40 years my senior, is considerably fitter than me.

I’ve seen first hand the amazing work some of the nominated charities do. Kirkwood Hospice provides vital care for sufferers of life-limiting illnesses and their families.

But with only 18 per cent of its funding coming from central government, dedicated volunteers have to raise £3.7 million every year just to keep going.

One Community is an innovative charity that gives help to those grassroots organisations that often miss out on funding.

And Asthma UK and Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice both carry out different, but equally important work.

The ride is named after legendary Mirfield cyclist, Brian Robinson – the first Briton to finish the Tour de France and the first to win tour stage.

On the ride I’ll be taking in some of the climbs that Brian trained on as a boy, including the gruelling Holme Moss, which the Tour de France riders will tackle when they come to Yorkshire in 2014.

Let’s just say I’ll do well to get the top without getting off and walking!

I’ve never ridden for such long distance before, so I’m getting in some last minute training to get me up to scratch.

Even if I cant’ walk the following morning, at least I can feel like Bradley Wiggins for a day.