More than £72,000 has been raised for Saints Foundation by 13 local fundraisers who cycled from Newcastle to Southampton via 20 Premier League stadiums.
Last month’s Big Bike Challenge kicked off at Newcastle’s St James’ Park and took riders on an 800-mile route around England to visit the stadiums of all 20 clubs who participated in the 2021/22 Premier League campaign.
After nine consecutive days on the saddle, the riders cycled back into Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium on Sunday 12th June, where family, friends and supporters – including Saints Foundation ambassador Francis Benali – gave them a heroes’ homecoming.
To mark Saints Foundation’s 20th anniversary season, this year’s Big Bike Challenge was the longest, toughest and biggest yet – and fittingly, it has raised its biggest fundraising total ever for the charity.
Thanks to the incredible fundraising efforts of each of the 13 riders, and the sponsorship from Saints Foundation’s corporate patrons, the Big Bike Challenge 2022 has raised an incredible £72,783, which will be used by Saints Foundation to continue delivering life-changing charitable programmes in Southampton.
Jazz Bhatti, Saints Foundation Fundraising and Partnerships Manager, said: “I have been blown away by our incredible riders and what they have put themselves through in the name of supporting their community.
“This challenge was harder than any of us envisioned, but with true grit, determination and humour they all reached the finish line together, supporting and encouraging each other every step of the way.
“They have shown the same outstanding effort and dedication to their fundraising, raising us a record-breaking total for the Big Bike Challenge, which our amazing delivery team will use to continue making a difference in our city. They are inspirational and I am so grateful for their generosity.
“I’d also like to thank the local businesses who sponsored the ride, especially our Official Event Partner Wessex Regional Care. Their donations and fundraising support shows their true commitment to making Southampton a happier, healthier place to live.”
Saints Foundation’s Big Bike Challenge 2022 was delivered in partnership with Wessex Regional Care. DP World Southampton, Barratt David Wilson Homes, Williams Shipping, Ocaris and Away Resorts all sponsored individual riders to take on the challenge.