Sat, 27 Jul 2019
A THATCHAM boy is gearing up to cycle 350 miles to raise money for children worse off than himself.
Ethan Kuijten will be cycling from Holyhead in North Wales all the way back to Thatcham, taking in Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons en route.
The 10-year-old is a keen cyclist and triathlete and will be taking on the challenge with his father, Bart Kuijten, to raise money for BBC Children in Need.
Speaking to the Newbury Weekly News, Ethan said: “I enjoy cycling and I have done some other bike rides in previous years and I thought I would do something a bit longer.”
Ethan is a member of Team Kennet and finished third at a triathlon in Andover at the weekend.
The ride will be the third time he has taken part in a long cycle with his father, but at 350 miles this will be the longest yet.
The pair will be taking the train to Holyhead today (Saturday) and will immediately begin their cycle ride, which they aim to complete in a week, meaning they will have to average 50 miles a day.
When asked about completing the ride within the target time, Ethan said: “We’ve booked accommodation for seven days, so I don’t have a choice.”
The Year 5 pupil at Francis Baily Primary School has chosen BBC Children in Need for his charity and had hoped to raise £350, a pound for every mile, but the target has been raised after it was quickly exceeded.
On choosing the charity, Ethan said: “I watch it every year and I feel sorry for the children that have their problems in their lives.
“I just thought I wanted to help with the fundraising.”
The father and son duo will meet up with Ethan’s mother, Sara, and brother Rueben at Bristol for the last two days of the journey.
Mrs Kuijten said: “I’m really proud of him.
“He wants to raise money to do it and he has a lot of enthusiasm and he’s very focused.
“When he wants to do something he does it.
“He doesn’t seem fazed by it and he is looking forward to the challenge.
“He has loved to cycle from a young age and he can just keep going and going.”
Indeed, after taking on the 350-miler from Wales to Thatcham, Ethan wants to cycle the 874 miles from Land’s End to John O’Groats next year.
Ethan has raised more than £530 and donations can be made at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ethan-kuijten