Martin completes extreme motocross event on moped

November 19, 2018 11:04 am

Martin Chapman has been riding motorbikes for over 40 years but he’d never tried anything as challenging as riding a moped on one of the world’s toughest sand tracks. Until now.

A year ago Martin’s friend and fellow bike enthusiast, Jack Penhaligon, suddenly lost his sight. Martin, who is always up for a challenge, decided to enter the HydroGarden Weston Beach Race in order to raise money for our Sight Appeal. But rather than compete on a motocross bike like everyone else, Martin thought he’d try it out on a 90cc moped.

The HydroGarden Weston Beach Race is iconic for its mile-long start straight down the beach along the water’s edge followed by a scramble back through the 36 man-made sand dunes, some as big as 15 metres high.

Up to 1,000 riders took part in the 2018 race and some of Martin’s supporters thought he’d be lucky to complete just one lap on his classic moped. They offered to double their donations if he made it past the first lap and it was this incentive that kept him going.

Martin completed four laps with no mechanical issues and finished in 749th place, beating about 250 other riders. He said: “I never expected to finish the race so to say I’m delighted is an understatement. I was absolutely exhausted at the end but the crowd were really cheering me on. I had to push the bike up the biggest dunes which was a huge challenge but every day is a challenge for Jack at the moment so I was determined to keep going.”

Martin raised over £1,200 for our Sight Appeal, smashing his original target of £500. And thanks to Martin, Jack is back on a bike, this time in a sidecar, as the two of them compete together in long-distance trial events.

“We rely on donations to run our services so the dedication of fundraisers like Martin cannot be underestimated. Earlier this year we launched the Sight Appeal in a bid to raise £50,000. Thanks to Martin and his supporters we are now well over halfway towards our target.”

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(Above: Moped’s take on the HydroGarden Weston Beach Race Powered by KTM, Video credit: RHL Activities)

(Above: Martin with Jack riding in a Sidecar at  the Bodmin Classic Trial, Photo credit: J M Photography)

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