Having suffered life-changing injuries, club member Adam Malin has spent lockdown in New Zealand and the club are joining him on the 11,000-mile journey from Auckland back home to Bath.
Adam was taking part in the Tour Aotearoa, a 3,000km cycling challenge in New Zealand when he lost control of his bike and fell 20m from the top of a cliff to the forest floor below. He remained conscious, however, was left face down and unable to move.
Fortunately for Adam his bike remained on the track and, moments later, was found by a pair of cyclists who were able to find him and activate his alarm beacon to alert a local rescue helicopter.
Speaking to local media in New Zealand after the accident, Adam said: “I knew the injury must have been significant as I couldn’t feel the lower half of my body and just a fizzy sensation like I was floating. What I didn’t realise at the time was the irreversibility of the damage.”
The accident has resulted in spinal injuries and partial paralysis for Adam, as well as meaning he has had to stay in New Zealand away from his family and friends in the UK as a result of lockdown travel restrictions while he starts his rehabilitation.
With news that a return to the UK would be upcoming, Bath Amphibians decided to join him on the journey home by racing him back to Bath by swim, bike and running the 11,000 miles in-line with COVID-19 restrictions.
The club are raising money for ‘The Back Up Trust’ through the challenge. A charity which supports people affected by spinal cord injuries and their families to help transform their lives and allow them to realise their full potential.
You can find out more about the charity on their website here.
Speaking about the challenge, Katie Holmes, Chairperson of Bath Amphibians, said: “Adam's attitude towards recovery and a new way of life has inspired us all as a club. The idea of the challenge is to race him back to Bath, which is over 11,000 miles from Auckland, using our members' swim, bike, run activities.”
The club have been racking up the miles, recording over 2,000 miles each week of the challenge so far, to be only 3,500 miles from home.
“Our members have been taking to their turbo trainers, treadmills and pop-up pools, as well as making the most of being able to swim, bike and run within the government and British Triathlon guidelines,” added Holmes.
“Adam actually arrived in the UK in mid-June, however, will have to stay in Salisbury Spinal Rehab unit for a while before he can return to Bath, so there’s still time for us to complete the remaining miles and beat him back to the city.”
You can donate to the club’s fundraising for ‘The Back Up Trust’ and see their updates on their Just Giving page below.