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Four friends take on Race to the Sun

FOUR friends from Frome have decided to take on the Race to the Sun Challenge which raises money for Action Medical Research for Children.

Tamsin and Mike Westbrook and Sarah and Ben Clarke will take part in the challenge next June as a team, in the setting of the Brecon Beacons. They will cycle 45 miles, climb Pen y Fan (2,907ft) and canoe Pontsticill Reservoir (3km).

Tamsin said, “It was Sarah’s idea as she turns 40 in 2016 and wanted to do something to mark it. She asked me if I wanted to do it as well and as I’d recently run a marathon and was looking to try out something new, I said yes straight away. I suggested doing it as couples because my husband is really into cycling and he and Ben, Sarah’s husband, are really good friends. I thought it would be great to do something together.”

Teams must raise  at least £2,000 for the charity before the challenge in June. The group has started planning their first fundraiser which is an online ‘Festive Promises’ auction on Thursday 26th November between 7pm-9pm.

Tamsin explains, “We need ‘promises’ to sell during our online auction which will be on Facebook. People can bid on each item by commenting  with their bid on the picture. We are hoping to have at least 25 promises. But payments don’t need to be made until Tuesday 1st December, meaning that people can bid from the comfort of their own home and pay for their purchases after payday.

“So far we have a full body massage from the Townhouse Retreat worth £36, a place on Affinity Wellbeing’s crossfire induction day, worth £75, a  commissioned painting worth £175 by Sarah Clarke and a tea party for two voucher worth £65 from my business Tea ‘n’ Cake. These are fantastic, unique Christmas presents that could be bought at bargain prices.

“I ran the Bournemouth Marathon in October and have run a few half marathons before that. Mike took up bike riding a couple of years ago and had an accident meaning he couldn’t ride for months. But all that did was to make him more determined and once he was back on the bike he has entered a few races including the Lionheart at Longleat earlier this year. He’s also doing a 180 mile in a day ‘Dragon Race’ in Wales next year.

“Sarah has always been keen on keeping fit. She recently set up a Ladies Cycling Club, there’s a Facebook page and now wants to do something really challenging. And Ben needed something to get him back into cycling.

“We’ve all got young children and training for the challenge is really difficult to fit around family life. Health and exercise went on hold for all four of us when our first children were born seven years ago, so now we’re trying to make up for it.

“We’re all really excited about doing it but we will probably get more nervous nearer the time.”

If you would like to donate a prize for the auction please contact Tamsin  by email: or call 07788 563208.