Paralysed fundraiser gears up for sponsored motorbike ride through Melton and Rutland

Paralysed former event rider Claire Lomas rides a motorbike for the first time in her life EMN-150806-152104001
Paralysed former event rider Claire Lomas rides a motorbike for the first time in her life EMN-150806-152104001
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Roads in Melton and Rutland will throb to the sounds of dozens of motorcycles on Sunday as Claire Lomas holds her latest fundraiser for research into a cure for paralysis.

A posse of bikers will set off from Eye Kettleby Lakes at 11am and continue a sponsored ride through Melton, Oakham and Uppingham and ending up at Wistow Rural Centre south of Leicester.

Claire, who was paralysed from the waist down following a horse riding eventing accident eight years ago, has borrowed a Harley Davidson trike for the Road2Recovery event and she is hoping many others will join her on motorbikes in the ride out across the two counties.

“We have 50 people already pre-registered and we are hoping more people register this week or they can just turn up and join us at the start or along the route,” said Claire (35), who will be donating all proceeds once again to the Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation (NSIF).

“I’ve organised this to raise awareness about the cause and also so people can have fun at the same time.”

Those who take part in the ride will be able to enjoy a barbecue at the finish in Wistow, challenge themselves to stay on a bucking bronco machine and listen to live music from the band Blue Skies in June. Prizes have also been donated for an online auction by former motorcycle world champion Carl Fogarty, motorsports commentator Suzi Perry, and others, to help swell the coffers further. The ride is being sponsored by the NFU.

The fundraiser follows two months on from Claire riding a motorbike for the first time in her life. She rode an adapted 850cc machine at speeds of 90kmh around Donington Park racetrack.

She added: “I’ve been approached about doing some motorbike racing and it is something I’m interested in but it’s early days to say whether I will at the moment.”

Anyone interested in joining Claire’s ride out should go online to www.claireschallenge.co.uk for more details or to pre-register - a minimum £5 donation to the NSIF is required to take part.

l Claire narrowly missed out on a prize in a prestigious national book awards after being shortlisted alongside a collection of top sportpeople and journalists.

She was in the running for the ‘New Writer’ category in the Cross British Sports Book Awards and attended the presentation night last week at Lord’s cricket ground in London.

Claire, whose book Finding My Feet told the remarkable story of how she recovered from her devastating riding accident to raise almost £500,000 for the NSIF charity, lost out in her category to Anna Krien’s Night Games: Sex, Power and a Journey into the Dark Heart of Sport.