Riders gear up to combat blood cancer

A team of cyclists from law firm
Walkers is in training for a gruelling 100-mile endurance bike ride through the
Sierra Nevada mountains to raise money to defeat blood cancer.

The Walkers’ team is taking part in
‘Racing to Save Lives’ in ‘America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride’ around Lake
Tahoe, Nevada to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society on 6 June.

The 13-strong team included partners,
senior managers and staff from the company.

Three of the team members are no
stranger to the lofty peaks of Sierra Nevada mountains as they took part in the
event last year, raising almost $50,000 for the charity.

This year, with an even bigger
team, the fundraising target has been raised to $80,000.

“In 2009, our ride was
inspired by the memory of former Walkers partner Frank Banks who bravely fought
brain cancer and sadly died last year,” said team captain Nancy Lewis,
chief executive officer of Walkers Global Holdings Limited.

“It was such a rewarding
experience that three of us are returning for another go and we have managed to
draft in another ten riders, with some family members joining the Walkers team.

“Many of us have friends or family
members who have been affected by this dreadful disease or other forms of
cancer and everyone on our team has their own personal reasons for taking part,”
she said.

Team Walkers consists of returning
riders: Nancy Lewis, Grant Stein and Mark Lewis, and joining the group this
year are Ian Ashman, Philip Millward, Rolf Lindsay, Shelley Lindsay, Caroline
Williams, Glen Inanga, Colette Wilkins, Victoria Hew, Donna Harding, and Sarah

The team has already raised more
than $17,000 and it is calling for the public’s support to help it reach its

Grant Stein, global managing
partner of Walkers, said: “Once again, we are riding in this event as part
of the team of one of our major clients and it is great to have so many of our
staff participating.”

The 100-mile course has a series of
demanding peaks, with altitude ranges between 6,300 feet and 7,100 feet above
sea level. It has numerous rolling ascents and descents adding up to more than 2,600
vertical feet of elevation gain.

“The most important thing for
us is that it doesn’t rain on the day of the race, although we are definitely
expecting it to be freezing cold again,” said Mark Lewis, managing partner
for clients at Walkers. “In terms of approaching the event with a bigger
team, we are focusing on preparing the less experienced riders for the endurance
and the steep climbs, while teaching them how to ride in a peloton when all the
cyclists are grouped together in a pack.”

They have been training intensively,
with some attending spinning classes and hiring personal trainers to build up
their fitness.

“I have just completed my
first 20-mile training ride which was quite challenging, although I am reassured
that it will get easier,” said Caroline Williams, partner with Walkers.

Colleagues at Walkers are also
doing their bit, participating in a ‘Dress Down Day’ and a bake sale in March
which raised a total of US$ 1,114.

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
is the world’s largest voluntary health organisation dedicated to funding blood
cancer research, education and patient services. Since its first funding in
1954, it has awarded more than $680 million in research funding.

donations can be made either through the link on the Walkers website www.walkersglobal.com or by accessing
the Walkers ‘Team in Training’ webpage: http://pages.teamintraining.org/nyc/ambbr10/TeamWalkers


Team Walkers gets ready to take on the Sierra Nevada moun-tains endurance bike race. Pictured from left are Grant Stein, Sarah Priaulx, Ian Ashman, Nancy Lewis, Caroline Williams, Mark Lewis, Glen Inanga and Victo-ria Hew. Missing from the photo are Philip Millward, Rolf Lind-say, Shelley Lindsay, Colette Wilkins, and Donna Harding.
Photo: Submitted