Bikers tackle challenge in aid of GNAAS

Scores of bikers have tackled two challenges in aid of the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS).

Scores of bikers have tackled two challenges in aid of the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS).  

Three bikers, amongst around forty members of the Boundary 500 Motorcycle Club that took part, attempted both challenges and completed a 650-mile ride on August 1-2nd.

Paul Duce, 45, from Saltburn and his two mates, Paul Jarred, 46, from Redcar, and Mike Wilkinson, 58, from Bishop Auckland completed the Boundary 500 Challenge, which covers 500 miles in the North of England – the area that the GNAAS aircraft operate in.  

On Sunday, they sported fancy dress and rode 130 miles across the North Yorkshire Moors in the Boundary Classic Challenge.

Mr Duce, a software consultant at Schneider Electric, took his 125cc motorcycle. He said: “Our bikes were half the size of normal bikes and we couldn’t push them passed 30mph-40mph. We all got up at 2:30am on Saturday morning to set off from Redcar. It took us 17.5 hours to complete.

“The three of us have done both challenges before and we wanted to push ourselves by tackling the double challenge. We’re all nutters. We always get plenty of attention.

 “There wasn’t a satnav in sight, only a good old sense of direction to guide, the moonlight and the stars.”

Mr Duce, who dressed as the Joker from the popular film The Dark Knight, started riding bikes twenty years ago and has spent the last three years as a member of the Boundary 500 Motorcycle Club, which has raised nearly £600,000 for GNAAS.

He said: “It was an absolutely bonkers weekend. Great fun with great friends and yet another fab experience to ponder for years to come. An amazing 656 miles in total in the same weekend, all to raise much-needed funds for a lifesaving service that no one hopes to use. Thank you to all those that have donated, you have made a difference.”

Mandy Drake, head of fundraising at GNAAS, said: “We want to thank everybody that supported the ride. The Boundary 500 Motorcycle Club have been stalwart supporters of the charity for many years and we wish to show our utmost appreciation.”

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