Yesterday (30th April) saw the beginning of Dave Cornthwaite‘s eighth adventure in his twenty five Expedition 1000 challenges. For each of his challenges Dave is using non-motorised transport to travel at least 1000 miles. In this latest adventure, called the GO trek Dave Cornthwaite and Squash Falconer will be travelling 3000 miles on ElliptiGO running bikes. This will be a record breaking distance for travelling on ElliptiGOs! During this adventure Dave and Squash will be encouraging people to take exercise and “Say Yes More!” They are also raising money for CoppaFeel, the charity promoting early detection of breast cancer. You can find out more about the GO trek on Dave’s website.
The GO Trek started off at Everton FC’s training ground at Finch Farm, where I joined Dave and Squash for the first leg of this adventure. A photoshoot had been arranged to promote the GO trek and ElliptiGO running bikes, with Dave and Squash posing in front of Everton FC’s logo.
Everyone was excited that the adventure was about to start after the month’s of planning that have made this expedition possible. Dave and Squash couldn’t wait to get going! With the cameraman sitting in the boot of a car, Dave and Squash followed behind as they left the training ground and got out onto the road at last. But before they could get going properly more photos of them were needed, so they had to ride up and down the road past the cameraman several times!
And They’re Off!
All things considered, the start went smoothly. Dave and Squash were both ready, fit and well. The ElliptiGO bikes were fully functioning and the sun was shining. The only thing missing was spare inner tubes. Whilst Adye from EllipitiGO UK went to sort this out, we set off. Dave & Squash needed to get to Derby by the end of the following day, other than that the route choice was made on the fly. So we headed towards the Runcorn bridge.
We had only cycled one mile before a passing motorist stopped us to find out more about the unusual ElliptiGO running bikes. After crossing Runcorn Bridge we bumped into another cyclist, Paul. This was a stroke of luck because Paul turned out to be from the National Cycle Network and was able to guide us through a maze like network of cycle lanes in Runcorn. Here we met up with Adye who had brought the spare inner tubes, making the spare parts kit complete.
The ElliptiGO running bike is an unfamiliar sight and nearly everyone we passed stopped to stare with curiosity. When going slowly, or when stopped at traffic lights, pedestrians and motorists were asking about them. Dave & Squash will soon become used to hearing cries of “What’s that your riding?” and “Where’s Your Saddle?”
By the time we got to Northwich Dave and Squash were getting more used to riding the ElliptiGOs and setting a steady pace. I could see that they were able to control the ElliptiGOs well at slow speed, with mounting and dismounting easy too. Uphill seemed to be a harder work, although they were both pulling trainers full of outdoor gear. Approaching Northwich we went down a steep, bendy hill. I wondered how the ElliptiGO handled at speed due to its small wheel and tall handle bar post. Dave was exhilarated and satisfied that he remained in control without the ElliptiGO wobbling. The low centre of gravity probably helps here. Dave said that he’d definitely film the next downhill on his Go-Pro camera!
Earlier this month we published an interview with Dave Cornthwaite in which he talks about his adventures and about riding the EllipitGO on the GO Trek. Its an essential read for everyone who is following this adventure!