Sixteen schools and hundreds of pupils from Brighton and Hove took part in Sustrans’ Emission Impossible last month.
The challenge – set by Bike It officer Ben Sherratt – saw the school children cycle to school and back over 9,000 times during one week in June – covering the total distance of the legendary 200-mile ‘South Downs Double’.
Each school in the area had to encourage enough children to cycle in each day to cover the distance. The challenge saw an average of 21 per cent of all pupils cycle each day at each school, with one school averaging 40 per cent of all pupils cycling every day.
Sherratt then followed up Emission Impossible by tackling the South Downs Double himself, for which 128 children cycled to Westdene Primary School to encourage the Bike It officer on the task.
Sherratt said: “I was amazed at the effort these kids put in to cycling to school to ensure that I had to meet my target. I had challenged the schools to a race, not only against each other, but against me. If they could ride in all week then I would ride the South Downs Way Double – 200 miles – in 24 hours. The send off I got was amazing, it really set me up for the excruciating ride ahead.”
The Bike It officer completed the ride in 23 hours, 40 minutes.