Blood, treat and gears – that’s the theme of the next Wooler Wheel Sportive, a cycling event which takes place next month.
And the organisers have announced that money from their Borderlands event will go to support the Great North Air Ambulance, which helped save the life of a well-known cyclist from north Northumberland.
The sportive offers rides of 170km, 100km and 60km plus a junior event for accompanied under 16s of 30km.
The announcement comes just after the first anniversary of the Great North Air Ambulance’s Blood on Board project, and has a particular relevance to the event.
Neil Wilson, who acts as controller for the riders during the event, made use of this service when he suffered severe injuries in a collision with a car last September whille out on his bike.
It was due to the quick response of the road paramedics and the fact that the air ambulance was carrying blood that Neil was able to be given two units of blood at the scene giving him a much better chance of recovery.
Wooler Wheel organiser, Janet Pibworth, said: “I’ve always known how vital the air ambulance is in a rural county like Northumberland.
“So when something like this happens to someone you know, it really hits home just what they do and what a difference the new Blood on Board scheme made to Neil.
“Incredibly, Neil is back on his bike and will ride in the event with other members of the Berwick Wheelers, where he is secretary.
“The Wooler Wheel events have been running since 2012 and our event in May offers several distances depending on people’s levels of fitness.
“Whatever distance people choose, they are guaranteed to have a great time.
“And the money raised couldn’t go to a cause more closer to our hearts than the Great North Air Ambulance.”
For those doing the Junior 30k, there’s a special treat because sponsor Doddington Dairy provides an ice cream at the halfway point in Lowick.
ll the events have some challenges from the first hill just a few miles from the start to the ascents at Whitten Edge for those on the 170km and Flodden Edge for those taking on the 170m or 100km. If you do get mechanical problems, Edinburgh Bicycle Co-operative will be on hand.