For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Justin Hoffmann and I’m about to set off to France to cycle 21 Tour de France stages totalling 3400 kilometres.
After months of training, planning, fundraising plus a rotter of a sickness bug last week, the eve of the Tour Challenge is upon me and this is the first blog of the challenge. So long as I can get a decent network connection (and can keep my eyes open) I’ll be keeping in touch with you via my blog on a daily basis, please follow me on Facebook (www.facebook.com/thetourchallenge.co.uk) / Twitter (www.twitter.com/letourchallenge) where you’ll get more frequent updates and where you’ll also be notified as and when a new blog is published.
I’m riding the route on behalf of Julia’s House – The Dorset Children’s Hospice, so it would be great if you could make a donation – all donations go direct to the charity as I am self funding the entire challenge.
I’ll be setting off to France with my soigneur*, my friend and work colleague Andy Pettman first thing tomorrow ready to catch the ferry from Dover to Calais mid-afternoon. Andy will be covering the first 2 weeks of the trip, following which ‘Dangerous’ Brian Hole will cover the final week and a bit.
Everything’s ready to be packed into the van including: food, bikes, spares, clothing, cooking equipment, the first aid kit, technical gadgets and all the logistical and insurance documentation.
The hard bit will be tomorrow morning when I have to say good bye to my wife and daughter, at least we’ll be able to keep in touch via Skype – but it will be a painful moment!
* soigneur – a member of cycling team responsible for feeding, clothing and escorting.