“In line with my motto - Dream Big, I’ve set myself a goal to complete the grueling 874 miles; cycling 100 miles and up to 2500 meters of climbing each day, in just 9 days”. Mel Nicholls.
They say ‘when things get tough, the tough get going’, and Alpkiteer Mel Nicholls is a prime example of someone who not only gets going but positively thrives when things get tough. From competing in Paralympic finals, gaining World and European Championships medals, holding track world records, to outrageous adventures such as Solo handcycling the Faroe Islands, Mel is a shining example of how adversity can lead to true greatness. Read more about Mel’s personal story and achievements here.
Mel’s latest goal aims to combine her athletic abilities and competitiveness with her love of adventure, by attempting to become the fastest female to handcycle Land’s End to John o’ Groats (LEJOG). The goal is to complete the grueling 874 miles; cycling 100 miles and up to 2500 meters of climbing each day, in just 9 days. The current female Guinness world record stands at 11 days. The male is listed at 10 days.
Mel will be attempting this achievement whilst representing Great Britain and as an ambassador with Ordnance Survey’s GetOutside national campaign; helping more people to get outside more often, and champion the British landscape and communities.
During the ride be Mel and her support team measuring air quality and pollution levels along the route supported by air quality monitoring specialists, as well as taking part in daily sports science testing in conjunction with Hartpury University, providing research into endurance and disability, in particular neurological and stroke, to benefit education and wider research applications.
Mel’s attempt will also be receiving support from Alpkit and Sonderwho will provide the Camino bikesthe support team, who Mel has dubbed the ‘A-Team’, will be riding alongside Mel, as well as sleeping equipment such as tents and sleeping bags.
Documentary filmmakers Friction Collective will be onboard the entire race and creating a documentary film from the heart of Handcycle Britain.
Mel describes a number of personal reasons for attempting this challenge. “A spark of adventure that was lit way back within a hospital’s four walls, and one that has grown over the years building to this point. My passion for adventure and my love of sport has always been closely linked, and following my Faroe Islands adventure last year, some corrective heart surgery that had put a pause on my racing, and my decision to leave the GB cycling team to put these things right, this project, built over the last year will bring my experience and mindset of performance sport, into the world of adventure and ultra-cycling, studying and learning from the best to begin my next chapter”.
We wish Mel the best of luck and will be cheering her on all the way. Follow her in real time on the map below:
We will also be posting updates across social media during the 9 days to help keep you alongside Mel every pedal of the way.