James ‘climbs Mount Everest’ in gruelling Sidmouth charity ride

James Salter during his Everesting bike challenge.

James Salter during his Everesting bike challenge. - Credit: Archant

A Sidmouth man has completed an astonishing feat of cycling endurance – climbing the equivalent height of Mount Everest on a bicycle, in one gruelling ride that had to be completed within 24 hours.

James Salter undertook the Everesting Challenge by riding up Sidbury Hill 51 times – a distance of more than 186 miles.

His achievement has so far raised more than £2,000 for the Multiple Sclerosis Society, with donations still coming in.

Mr Salter’s ride, on Sunday, July 12, started at 5.41am and ended at 1.31am on the Monday morning, including a few scheduled rest stops - amounting to 15 hours’ riding and a total of 19 hours 48 minutes.

But he admits that at times, he felt like giving up.

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He said: “I had a couple of wobbles.

“One when I hit halfway and it was already 14.30, after riding since 05.41, and I couldn’t stomach any more food.

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“I knew I needed to keep eating, as fuelling up was the main issue to keep going, but I felt sick from eating and doing that much exercise.

“It was also hot, really hot, so I had to stop and grab water within my normal five-rep sets.

“I didn’t want to give up at that point, but I was worrying how far I would get before the inevitable.

“I kept going at this point mostly out of stubbornness and as I couldn’t not carry on with all that sponsorship unless I could literally not continue.”

He had another, more serious, ‘wobble’ close to the end of the ride, but was buoyed up by friends riding with him.

He was cold, ‘with a day’s worth of sweat in my jersey,’ and struggling to eat enough to keep going.

Resting before the final four laps, he was ‘not in a good way’, but managed to complete the challenge.

Mr Salter is raising money for the Multiple Sclerosis Society because his wife’s mother has the condition.

He said: “It is really not nice. MS affects everyone differently and it has neurological and physical effects. I don’t feel like I’ve ever really known Emma’s mum, even after 10 years. She’s not the person that I hear about.

“Therefore the MS Society is very close to my heart.”

He has already raised more than £7,000 for the charity through cycling trips across Spain and Italy with his friends Jake Cope and Steve Hackett.

Visit his JustGiving page to donate.

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