BIKING brothers-in-law Steve Joyce and Ian Schofield are gearing up to cycle 1,000 miles across Europe.
The pair, both of South Shields, will ride from Bristol to Barcelona to raise money for Props, a charity supporting young people with physical and learning difficulties.
Steve, 48, and Ian, 54, will set off on their epic journey on July 2, with the aim of arriving in the Catalan city 11 days later.
They’ll first cycle to Portsmouth, before getting the ferry to France and riding south to Bordeaux.
At that point, Steve, director of building services company SES, and Ian, owner of Schofield Joinery, will be joined by Steve’s wife Sue, 46, a nurse at South Tyneside District Hospital.
They’ll then ride through the south of France, over the Pyrenees and into Spain before ending their journey in Barcelona.
Steve, of Westoe, said: “One of the lads from work, Martin Harrison, is riding from Bristol to Bordeaux for Props, and he asked if we fancied joining in.
“Some of the young people that the charity helps are going to join in along the ride for a few days, and we decided to give it a go.
“Martin lives in Barcelona and said that when the ride finished in Bordeaux, he was just going to keep going on until he got home, and it seemed like a good idea at the time, but I think now we’re realising exactly what we’ve signed up for.
“We’ve done around 2,000 miles in training over the last few months, and we’ve been cycling all over the country to get used to different terrain.
“We booked a cheap holiday to Lanzarote last weekend and did about 150 miles, so we could get used to cycling in the heat, and it’s going to be tough.
“During our training, we’ve been averaging at about 300 miles a week, but during the challenge, we’re looking at about 100 miles a day.”
The trio of cyclists only took the sport up last year.
Steve added: “We got to that age when you start thinking about what you’re eating and that you should maybe be doing a bit more to keep fit.
“We trained up and did a coast-to-coast cycle last year, and it’s all about being fit and healthy and helping a charity at the same time.
“It’s going to be an amazing experience. How many people can say they’ve cycled across Europe to Barcelona?”
The group will be updating their blog as they continue with their ride. To check their progress, or to sponsor them, go to www.b2bprops2014.wordpress.com