A Great Missenden man is taking on a 100-mile cycling challenge to beat bowel cancer in memory of his world record-setting grandad.
Thomas Pass, 23, will be taking on the challenge of the Prudential Ride London-Surrey 100 on Sunday, July 31, in aid of the charity Beating Bowel Cancer. He will be cycling in memory of his grandad, Peter Pass MBE, who died after suffering from the disease in 2013, aged 79.
In 1956, Peter captained the England Water Polo team in the Melbourne Olympics. He then went on to enter the Guinness World Records in 1972 for the most number of caps for Great Britain, before receiving an MBE for his outstanding contribution to British sport in the same year.
Thomas said: “Sadly grandad wasn’t aware that he had bowel cancer until it was too late. Unfortunately, it was this lack of awareness that potentially cost him his life.
“It’s an awful disease, the UK’s second biggest cancer killer, but far too many people, like my grandad, are unaware of the symptoms. It is because of this that it can often be diagnosed too late to be treated successfully. I personally want to do as much as I can to help raise awareness and to raise funds for the charity Beating Bowel Cancer, who do so much for those affected by the disease.”
Thomas, a senior business development manager for Caterlink, a food service company, said: “I took the decision that I needed to get myself into shape after too much turkey at Christmas! Since then I’ve lost 3 stone, attended lots and lots of spinning sessions and cycled over 400 miles, including the Chiltern 100.”
“Over the next few months I have committed to the London to Brighton, the Prudential Ride London, the Tour De Vale and Tour De Cuisine, which will add another 300 plus miles to my bike.”
The Ride London challenge will begin in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park before following a 100-mile route through the capital and into Surrey’s stunning countryside, before finishing on the Mall in central London.
Thomas added: “I’m really excited about the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100. The training for the challenge is going really well, although I did have three flat tyres on my previous charity ride! I think the biggest challenge on the day will be trying not to fall off my bike as I am easily distracted by the London scenery.”
To donate to Tom’s fundraising efforts please visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Thomas-Pass1
Each year around 41,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with the disease, but if caught early, more than 90% of cases can be treated successfully.