AFTER just three months training in the saddle, a Worthing man completed an ambitious charity challenge which saw him cycle to France.
Mark Arnold, 40, took up cycling earlier this year, and immediately signed up to do the four-day, 300-mile ride to Paris in memory of his late father, Trevor Arnold.
Trevor died of cancer at St Barnabas House hospice in Durrington 10 years ago, and Mark decided he wanted to give something back. So far, he has raised more than £1,500 for the hospice.
Mark, of Beaumont Road, said: “It was an absolutely amazing trip, helped a lot because the crew was so excellent.
“It was emotional, because it’s tough. It’s four days of hard work and you really don’t get the chance to think about what you’re doing until you arrive.
“My old man hated going on holiday, but he once took us to France and we went into Paris for the day. We were driving round for about two hours and we could see the Eiffel Tower, but we just couldn’t get to it.
“For about 20 years, that was a long-running family joke, so when I finally arrived there I had a wry smile on my face.”
Mark said he could not have completed the ride without the help of members of Worthing Excelsior cycle group, who allowed him to train with them, as well as the staff at Quest Adventure in Broadwater, who helped him get his bike set up.
He also said he has now got the cycling bug, and is already looking to do another big, cycling-based fund-raiser for St Barnabas House next year.
Mark can still be sponsored at www.justgiving.com/mark-arnold40