A dozen intrepid cyclists pedalled from the Woodland Group Office in Chelmsford to the Panathlon Challenge at Columbus College today in preparation for their upcoming London to Paris bike ride, in support of both the Panathlon and Essex Air Ambulance charities.

Not only did they see 80 Panathletes competing in a range of sports (see pics below) from 4 local schools in Essex, but they heard the wise words from Danny Crates, part time Panathlon Patron, lately a London Marathon competitor, but also recently an endurance cyclist too. Danny, a Paralympic champion, last year rode from Lands End to John O’Groats and imparted knowledge on everything from tyre changes, nutrition and the best cream to relive saddle sores…

Danny says: “I’ve been a patron of Panathlon for many years and have seen first hand the benefits it has for local disabled children and it was fantastic today to meet the team from the Woodland Group and wish them well on their ride to Paris.”London2ParisBikeRide

Teams competing today were Beacon Hill from Thurrock, Columbus in Chelmsford, Glenwood from Benfleet and Oakview from Loughton. The top 2 teams from this semi-final would go on to qualify for the Essex wide Final in July, with 2 more from next weeks other semi-final in Braintree. After several hours action, the team from Beacon Hill triumphed with Columbus in 2nd (see a complete set of results here)

Sean Kirby, Managing Director from Woodland Group says: “It was great to see the children taking part in the event at Columbus College and to fully appreciate the hard work that the children and the Panathlon team put into an event such as this, we sincerely hope that charitable events such as the London to Paris ride raises awareness within the county and likeminded individuals and businesses can help to support Panathlon in the excellent work that they do.”

Click the video here to see some action and hear what some of the riders have to say

Notes. The Woodland Group Since its creation in 1988, global logistics specialists Woodland have grown to be one of the leading independent freight forwarders in the UK.  The company employs more than 550 highly trained, committed and dedicated staff strategically based around the world, with a wealth of technical expertise and depth of industry knowledge.  Their success is down to their people – delivering the highest degree of customer service.

The London to Paris Bike Ride will take place from Friday 23 May to Monday 26 May and will involve approx. 265 miles of cycling by a group of 20 Woodland Group employees, friends and colleagues to raise funds for the Panathlon Challenge charity and Essex Air Ambulance. Further details and fundraising page here – http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/WoodlandGroupL2P