Geoff (middle) and friends on Brit Cyclo recce
Geoff Thomas and Ian Wright have announced that they will take on arguably the world’s most demanding sporting challenge this summer, riding the Tour de France route.
This is the second time Geoff will have cycled the route of the Tour de France, but the first time for Ian Wright, who will be joining Geoff and five other cancer survivors for the first week of the grueling race.
Geoff Thomas captained Crystal Palace to the FA Cup Final in 1990 before retiring in 2002. He was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukaemia in 2003 and given just three years to live.
Following a successful bone marrow transplant, intensive chemotherapy and radiotherapy, Geoff’s leukaemia went into remission in January 2005. Geoff has worked relentlessly ever since to raise funds for various leukaemia charities and this year is launching his own charity, The Geoff Thomas Foundation, which will raise money to fund clinical research into leukaemia.
Geoff said: “Most people think I’m mad putting myself through this again but I am in a position to help others and delighted to be able to do so. Riding the Tour de France is such an extreme challenge but it is amazing what you can achieve when you put your mind to it and stay positive. My motivation is to raise money for the Geoff Thomas Foundation, which supports the incredible research work that the professors are doing to help find a cure for leukaemia”.
Ian Wright commented: “It didn’t quite sink in until recently exactly how far I am going to be cycling. I am getting fitter and fitter all the time, I have all the cycling kit now, and get out on my bike every day. The prospect of doing 200km a day up mountains is very daunting, and I have a long way still to go with my preparation.”
Official clothing partner Impsport will provide both leisurewear and specialist cycle clothing, kitting out the riders and support team. The team will ride the 2,400 mile, 21 day Tour de France, setting off two days after the professionals and maintaining the same schedule, including the prologue and Stage One of the race, which starts in London.
In preparation for the Tour, Geoff will also be completing the London to Canterbury British Cyclosportive on the Sunday 1st July. Impsport is also the Official clothing partner for this event, and all purchases of the British Cyclesportive clothing and merchandise include a donation to the The Geoff Thomas Foundation. Impsport Managing Director Dan Ellmore and three other Impsports riders will be part of the 5000 riders at the event.