Two former North-East speedway stars are going on the ride of their lives to help a cause close to their hearts.
Adam McKinna and Jamie Robertson, along with their friend and ex-Newcastle Diamonds mechanic Campbell Rodgerson, are travelling 1,600 miles across India in a tuk-tuk – a motorised three-wheeled rickshaw.
They are one of 50 teams taking part in the Rickshaw Challenge, which will take around two weeks and raise money for the Wings for Life foundation, which funds research into cures for spinal cord injuries.
Adam, 29, who lives in Scotland, broke his neck racing for the Diamonds in 2010, but despite his horrific accident, he says he is one of the fortunate ones.
Plus the trio know plenty of other people – and not just from the world of speedway – whose lives have been changed by neck and back injuries.
Jamie, 29, and Campbell, 30, grew up in Milfield in north Northumberland and went to school with mountain-biker Tommy Wilkinson, who rode through Kielder Forest with Robson Green in Further Tales from Northumberland.
Two years ago, Tommy was seriously injured after crashing into a tree, fracturing his skull and damaging his spinal cord, but with the aid of a robotic arm, he is back on his bike.
The team will be providing daily updates via www.facebook.com/On-a-Tuking-Mission-869646976444833/
Donations can be made via http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/onatukingmission
“We hope in the future injuries like this will be seen like a broken leg is now. It’s not the end of the world. Your life’s not changed forever,” said Adam. “That will become an option the more research they do. But that costs money and that’s why we want to do this thing – so the answers come quicker.”