Father-of-two takes on epic 3,000-mile 'Tour de Tom' ride to raise £50,000 for Prostate Cancer UK

Father-of-two takes on epic 3,000-mile ‘Tour de Tom’

4 min read

Following in the footsteps of the professionals from over 70 years ago, Tom Neal will be cycling solo and unsupported a 3,000-mile route retracing the 1951 Tour de France in June with the support of bike.rent 

Tom Neal will be cycling solo and unsupported a 3,000-mile route retracing the 1951 Tour de France in June with the support of bike.rent

Tom’s bike set up 

The 1951 Tour de France is notorious for being one of the most challenging routes in history – but Tom Neal from Saltash is a man up for that challenge.

Tom's inspiration for the epic challenge is his dad, John, who died after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2011.

Tom said "I was backpacking in New Zealand and celebrating my recent marriage when I got a call out of the blue and was told my dad had advanced prostate cancer," 

"I came home straight away to be with dad. Seeing someone you love so much struggle like that was one of the hardest things I've ever been through.

Tom Neal will be cycling solo and unsupported a 3,000-mile route retracing the 1951 Tour de France in June with the support of bike.rent

1951 Tour de France route

After losing his dad, Tom moved to France and found solace on his bike, exploring the country on two wheels. His love of cycling and the French landscape inspired him to start planning for his epic adventure, emulating the riders who completed the Tour of 1951 – the year of his dad’s birth.

Tom will set off from Metz on June 1st, covering up to 200 miles a day, every day for 26 days. He’ll ride across the plains of northern France, through the Massif Central – the largest upland in the country – across the Pyrenees, through the Alps and north to Paris, where he will triumphantly cross the line at the Arc de Triomphe on June 26th.

Friends will join him on a couple of the stages, and he’s secured the backing of three sponsors, one of which bike.rent, to aid him on his journey, but Tom will largely be taking on the thousands of metres of elevation and potentially treacherous conditions by himself.

Tom Neal will be cycling solo and unsupported a 3,000-mile route retracing the 1951 Tour de France in June with the support of bike.rent

Tom’s jersey

Tom reflected "I know I'll have some dark days on the bike, and it will very much be a mental battle at times, but I feel like past experiences, like losing my dad, have made me far more resilient."

 "I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous, but I'm confident I'll finish on time," he said.

"I've decided to do the ride solo and self-supported, even though it means I'll have to carry all my own kit on the bike. I feel it'll be less complicated that way and means I can go at my own pace without having to rely on anyone else".

Tom Neal will be cycling solo and unsupported a 3,000-mile route retracing the 1951 Tour de France in June with the support of bike.rent

All of the kit that Tom will have to carry on his bike

We invite everyone to rally behind Tom’s extraordinary cause and support his mission to combat prostate cancer. By following his progress and contributing to his fundraising efforts, we can make a difference in the lives of those affected by this devastating disease. Tom’s determination, resilience, and love for his father will inspire us at bike.rent Manager as he embarks on this remarkable voyage of remembrance and strength.

 

He added "I feel very lucky to have a chance at doing this, I'm just a 40-year-old carpenter and amateur cyclist, I'm far from being a professional athlete and this is the only shot I'll have at being able to raise a decent amount of money for Prostate Cancer UK. I am so appreciative to have the full support of my family and friends," 

"They all know how much I want to do this, and I'd like to think my dad would be proud of what I'm doing."

Father-of-two takes on epic 3,000-mile 'Tour de Tom' ride to raise £50,000 for Prostate Cancer UK

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