SuperheroTri-DONE!!

So there we have it, after weeks and months of training, travelling across the UK collecting parts or training at new locations, it all came together on August 19th.

It was early Saturday morning, and Dad had loaded up the bikes and strapped the Kayak, mum had made our picnic for the day, and loaded up the remaining essentials. By 8:15 we were on the road.

 

We arrived at Dorney Lake at 9:30. There was much going on. We unloaded some of our kit, and went to pitch our gazebo, set our base, and await our supporting entourage-34 of us in total !!

We just went to set off towards mission headquarters, and Dad put his Superpowers to the test straight away. We had just walked away from our gazebo, when a sudden gust of wind sent it skywards and then heading down the road towards us. Dad jumped in front of it like something from a movie, stopping it in its tracks

 

 

We eventually got to mission HQ to register for our races. This is where we amazingly bumped into Brooke ( my teammate ) for the first time ever. She spotted us in our supporters shirts and introduced herself and her family. We spoke about the upcoming race, and what we needed to do. We said we’d meet her at he transition zone for 12:00 to have our photos taken along with the other celebrity teams.

Ben & Brooke on the floating pontoon

The transition zone was extremely busy. We really wasn’t sure what we were meant to be doing, so we winged it a bit and followed the crowd. We met Jamie (Aurora Media) and he wanted to do a pre-race interview with Iwan Thomas (Olympic Sprinter/TV sports presenter) explaining that Adam Hills couldn’t make it, and to find out how we were going to attack the race.

Jamie -Aurora Media (yellow) & Iwan Thomas interviewing us before the race

Brooke decided at the last minute that she would take on the running stage, as well as competing in the swim. She was a real superhero for our team, she was great!

 

Brooke setting off for the 150m swim

Brooke eventually set off in the swim with all the other competitors. It was impossible to tell where she was in the water, as everyone looked the same. We eagerly waited with her mum, ready for me to set off once she had handed over the timing chip.

 

She eventually made it, she had done well, we were placed about mid way in the race order. I set off through the transition zone in hot pursuit of #TeamLiz (Liz Johnson, Paralympic swimmer) who was just ahead of me. She was encouraging me and Dad to keep up with her right up past the Olympic suite, just over the bridge, where she suddenly put on the afterburners and was gone!

The ride was difficult. The wind was so strong blowing against us. It seemed a long way, and against the wind it made it tiring to get up and over the small bridges. We eventually hit halfway and turned around for the return. We could hear our supporters cheering us on from the other side of the lake, and gave them a wave hoping they could see us.

Me & Dad dropping into the transition zone

We dropped back into the transition zone where Brooke was waiting to take the chip, and head off on the 1Km run.

 

Crossing the finish line with Brooke

We quickly parked up our bikes, and ran around to the finish line, hoping to be there to see Brooke cross the line. We were just in time. We got ushered through to run the last 15m or so across the line as #TeamAdam.  – It was brilliant!   Everyone was cheering us on. We crossed the line and was awarded our medals. Jamie and Iwan were there to grab a quick interview with us to find out how we got on. I loved it!!

 

We were congratulated by everyone, and managed to get a team picture together.

I personally want to thank all the Superhero Team, for giving me the opportunity to take part in this event. I have never been able to take part in something like this, and i’m sure this is just the beginning for me. It was fantastic to get to spend some time with Adam Hills, and also the chance to get up close and compete with the other teams and their captains. Myself and my family have thoroughly enjoyed the last few months. We have met some wonderful people who also competed that day.

I also want to thank Jamie from Aurora Media, and his ever busy team for being so kind and friendly over the last few months. I have some wonderful memories from our filming days.

I also want to thank each and every one of the people who have sponsored me for this event. There are too many to mention! I have been fortunate to raise, (when it’s all collected) nearly £1400.00. I have still had people sponsoring me after the day too! It is being split between my school (Kingfisher School, Abingdon) & Perthes Association.

And finally, I especially want to thank Brooke-my team mate. I couldn’t have asked for a better person, and maybe next time, we’ll be able to test ourselves against each other. We wish her well for the future.

You can catch up with my story, and the Superhero Tri day by watching the Channel 4 coverage on OnDemand. or on All4 online at: http://www.channel4.com/programmes/superhero-tri

Part 2: Oscar’s race – Coming soon……………..

The Final Countdown

It’s nearly upon us – Super Saturday! All the hours of training, the blood, sweat, and tears, will all be worth it for this fantastic day.

It is nearly a month again since my last post. It has been an extremely busy three weeks.

It is the school holidays, and Mum & Dad have been taking us swimming-alot! We have been going three times a week, to the White Horse Leisure Centre in Abingdon. Dad has been going off in the swimming lanes, and Oscar, Mum & I have been playing in the pool. It was strange that we were going so often, but Mum & Dad had a big secret up their sleeves.

Saturday 5th August – Oscar and I went to Portsmouth and Southsea with Nanny & Grampy. It was an early start, for a busy day ahead. We saw lots of boats, but the biggest surprise was a trip on the hovercraft across to the Isle of Wight. In the meantime, Mum & Dad had snuck off to Birmingham to collect part of the surprise.

Sunday 6th  Mum & Dad played a trick on Oscar & I, by saying that we were to go and get our bikes out, and go on a training ride. It was then that the surprise was unveiled. We opened the garage door, and there stood a big blue Kayak. Mum & Dad then told us that Dad had signed Oscar up to take part in the Superhero tri, and that Dad would be his Sidekick for their race – A 150m Swim, 3Km Ride, and a 1Km run. All that swimming practice was for this!!

But there is only 2 weeks to go!! Dad needed all the practice he could get.

Dad is going to swim tow Oscar in the Kayak for the swimming stage of the race. Oscar and Dad will then cycle together, then finish up with Dad running and pushing Oz in his wheelchair. This means, I get to cheer them on after my big race beforehand.

With more swimming sessions squeezed in to an already busy month, Dad was desperate to get into some open water for some practice with Oz.

Sunday 13th – We headed to Sandbanks, Poole, for a day at the beach, with the Kayak strapped on the back of the truck. We spent the day playing on the sand and in the sea, then in the afternoon, we drove round to the harbour side for Dad and Oz to practice some swimming.

Dad  & Oz squeezed into their wetsuits, and headed out into the water. Dad strapped Oscar to his ankle, then swam off pulling Oz in the Kayak. They swam really well, and seemed to swim for a really long time. They eventually came back for a rest, and told Mum and I how good it seemed. All the planning of how Dad was going to tow Oz, was a success. They went out again, and this time, mum timed them for several minutes, and Dad was confident that he will manage the swim ( after all his worries ) Dad hasn’t done ‘proper’ swimming since he left primary school, so you can understand his concerns.

With 3 Days to go, we are heading out cycling tomorrow, with swimming in the evening, and Dad is hoping to have another run. Then, it will be final checks on everything from bikes to kits to haircuts on Friday, ready for an early start Saturday.

It seems that quite a few of our friends are coming to support us on the day. We’ve had some #TeamAdam T-shirts made, and we have some support signs for our fans to wave during the race.

Many many people have been really kind in sponsoring me for the race. Both my Just Giving and My Donate pages are really building towards my target. The fact that Oscar is taking place now too, makes it extra special, given that one of my chosen charities is the ‘Perthes Association‘ (the disease that Oscar is suffering in his hip)

I am really grateful for everybodies donations. Mum and Dad have been keeping me updated with everyone who has donated online, and again, i thank you all.

I may squeeze a quick Pre – race post up on Friday night, but if we run out of time, I look forward to filling you all in with all the news from the day

Thanks for reading – my Super Followers!!

A month of memories

It’s been a whole month since my last post, I know its bad, but what a month it’s been. When Dad hasn’t been working, we’ve been out training-birthdaying- training-sightseeing-training-Superhero-ing-training and on and on. It has certainly been a month of memories.

We’ve had a bit of this………………

Oscar’s ‘Superhero Tri’ Birthday cake

…..plenty of this…………

Me & Dad out on a wet Sunday afternoon

…..amazingly this……..

Me & My Youtube hero Shmee!!

…and finally….

Myself-Adam Hills & Oscar gearing up for a race
Me and the ‘Super’ Jonnie Peacock, just days after his Gold in the 100m T44 at the IPC World Championships

At the end of June Oscar celebrated his 7th birthay, and in true Oscar style, he wanted a Superhero Tri birthday cake to show his support for the big race.

For his birthday, Oscar received ‘The Red Dragon’ A new recumbent trike, all the way from Wales. Its a nice shiny red one, and under instruction from ‘SonicSophia’ ( whom we met at the ‘Come & Tri’ event #TeamSophia) the bike had to be named.

Oscar at Aberavon beach, having just picked up his new bike

July 1st was one of the best EVER days. We headed to Goodwood Festival of Speed, thanks to Jamie from the Aurora Team ( Media team covering the Superhero series) Jamie set us up with the perfect day. He sorted a base for the day for the day, nearby parking, and set up a meet with my Youtube hero Shmee. Dad & I done some filming for the programme, following me around the supercar paddock, and doing an interview on the lawn infront of the show cars. There was so much to see and do, and we will definitely be returning next year – Seeing the cars was fantastic!!

  

Training

Training has been stepped up. We’ve really been putting in the miles. I’ve got faster and faster. Early in the month, my top speed was 13/14mph, yesterday at Dorney Lake, I hit a top speed of 17.2mph over 1.43Km.

Downtime

Saturday 23rd July- We headed to Bristol. Dad Took his truck there to be fixed, do we headed to Bristol harbour to see all all the boats, and a visit to the S.S Great Britain.

The harbour was extremely busy, as it was the harbour festival weekend. The boat was huge, and we got to walk below it in the dry dock, and also to go aboard and see what life was like living and working on the boat. I really enjoyed the day.

At the helm
With the famous Isambard Kingdom Brunel

And finally…..

Monday 24th July we headed back to Dorney Lake to meet with Sophia Warner and her team, Adam Hills, Jonnie Peacock and Jamie & the Aurora media team. We done a brief bit of filming, and got to spend some time with Adam, with me & Oscar racing him up and down the lakeside. He is so chilled out, and we got on really well. He is so friendly and accomodating, and it’s good of him to take time out of his busy schedule. We also got to say a proper hello to Jonnie Peacock, and congratulate him on his recent win at the world championships, and also to have some pictures with him, we are really thankful. Oscar instantly spotted Jonnie fron the T.V and was quick to let him know that he had been watching him. I think Jonnie has a new big fan. With Oscar suffering with his Perthes, he has taken real inspiration from all the athletes. Oscar and I also got Sophia, Adam & Jonnie to sign our bike flags, and they all wrote really kind inspiring messages for us both.

Oscar, hope you enjoyed the championships. Best of luck with everthing in the future! always stay positive!! Jonnie Peacock

Dear Oscar, Get your legs fixed so that you can be a superfast superhero in 2018! Love Sophia
To Oscar, I hope to see you winning a gold medal soon. Big love Adam Hills
Ben, I ran my (heart) out for you! Go Team Spud! Adam Hills
Super luck for 19th Aug Sophia xx

We got to watch Adam and Jonnie ( from across the lake) doing some filming for the upcoming programme. Adam seemed to be attempting ‘The Worm’ and the ‘Funky chicken’ dance ???? We cannot wait to see what this is all about-it made some funny viewing from where we were stood.

For now it’s back to training, and the school holidays. It’s less than a month to go now, and that means starting to get my game head on. It’ll be here before I know it.

The real countdown to August 19th begins NOW!!

Come & ‘Tri’

It was a wet Wednesday afternoon, when Dad received a private message on Twitter from the Superhero Team asking for his phone number. When they called, it was for the most exciting news we’d heard since finding out who our team would be, back in March. Dad spoke with Lisa, who said that they were inviting us along to Dorney Lake on 12th June, to meet up with some of the other participants and their team leaders. There was a possibility we’d get to meet our team captain Adam Hills too. They said that they wanted to profile me for a program to be aired in August, around the time of the race. Channel 4 were going to follow my progress and interview us for the program. Mum & Dad were Super excited by the invite.

Fast forward to June the 12th, and we loaded up the truck with all our bikes, and hit the road to Dorney Lake. Nan & Gramp came along for some support, but really, I think Nanny Sue just wanted to go celebrity spotting.

We arrived at Dorney Lake around noon. The weather was fairly overcast but warm. At the boat house end of the lake, some organisers were setting up for the swimming event of the day. We headed round to the Olympic Suite, where there were a few others who hadn’t long arrived. We parked up and started to unload the bikes.

Outside the Olympic Suite

As we were, another family parked up and started to unload their bikes. They were from Manchester, and their Daughter Sophia was competing with her Brother (swim) Sophia was really friendly and excited to meet everyone, particularly Harry ( Nanny & Grampys dog) We spent the next half an hour racing each other up and down the side of the lake, all getting to know each other.

Eventually, we headed down to the lakeside and met everyone else. People were getting into wet suits to take part in a 50m swim event for a bit of filming. Mike Bushell from BBC Breakfast was taking part, for filming, to be shown on 1st July. As we were waiting for them to start, we noticed Adam Hills wandering over, before getting into his wet suit and joining the swimmers.

Mike Bushell from BBC Breakfast and Sophia on her hand pedalled bike

When everyone was safely back to shore and had got changed, event organiser and Paralympic athlete, Sophia Warner,  introduced Adam Hills to us. He was really friendly, and we got to ask him some questions and get some pictures with him.

Sophia Warner introducing #TeamAdam together
Oscar asking some very interesting questions

 

#TeamAdam
Adam & Oscar 

 

Nanny Sue & Adam Hills

#TeamSpud

Soon after, it was the 1Km cycle event. We all got our bikes and headed to the start line. Me, Oscar, Adam and Dad, all joined the back of the grid. There were some really fantastic bikes there, all different in their ways to help each rider compete in the race. Sophia from Manchester headed up the grid with her hand pedaled bike. As the horn sounded, we set off!

At the back of the grid
Dad trying to get on The Last Leg #TeamAdam

I raced ahead, and left Adam, Dad & Oscar behind. Oscar done well, but Dad had to help tow him along, as his hip became really tired. We raced along the edge of the lake, then at the halfway point, went around a guy doing some filming, then back along the same route, over the bridge and across the finish line. Dad said that it was the fastest he’d seen me ride-ever! The training must be paying off.

Over the finish line beating Adam & Dad!
Me & Grampy
Me beating Dad

After some more pictures, a bit of filming and waiting for everyone to finish, it was time for the final event-a 350m run. Everyone was invited to take part. I’d never run as far as this before, and we didn’t realise that we could take part, but we thought we’d give it a go. We set off, and joined the rest of the competitors. Some were in wheelchairs, some were running, some (Oscar) was on his trike. We got to the half way point, and we had a breather.

As we carried on, I had to stop a couple more times. When we got close to the finish line, Dad told me they were handing out food as people crossed the line. I hit 5th gear and raced ahead of Dad, to find that he was telling a big fat lie, and it was his way of getting me to speed up. It was exhausting, but I really enjoyed it. 

And Over the finish line!

 

It was nearly 3 o’clock, and it was time to break for lunch. We headed to the Olympic suite for lunch, and Dad & Oscar went out on the lake on a paddle board.

On the paddle board

 

After lunch, we went headed up to the boat house where the channel 4 team wanted to do an interview with me & Dad. There was a few people before us being interviewed. We sat on the balcony area overlooking the lake, whilst waiting to be called. It was lovely and sunny, and a nice end to the day. Eventually, we were called in. Sophia Warner was going to be interviewing us with the camera crew watching on. We met a man called Jay, who offered us some tickets for the Goodwood Festival of Speed in a few weeks. He’d read my story and knew that I love supercars. Sophia made sure we were comfortable then started the interview. I managed to make Dad completely fluff his lines, by trying to correct him how old I am (ha ha).  The interview didn’t take too long, and we went back out onto the balcony where Lisa from the Superhero Team had me put on a superhero outfit for some pictures.

We met up with Nan & Gramp who had taken Harry for a long walk. We went back to the truck and loaded up before saying our goodbyes to Sophia & her family, before their long drive back to Manchester.

Oscar & Sophia ( From Manchester)

It was a fantastic day, and we all really enjoyed the experience. It was well worth the day off school. It was a shame that we didn’t get to meet our other team member Brooke. We were told she was doing some important school exams, so we wish her good luck for those!!

 

 

“The Green Hornet!”

So-My KMX Recumbent trike has had the full makeover treatment.  Mum & Dad decided that they’d treat me to getting it re-coloured with some added bits too.

Dad sent an email to the guys at Envy Coating in Witney, Oxfordshire, and they responded the same day with an invite to go over and check out the workshop and select some colours. It was my birthday the very next day, and we were heading to the British Motor museum at Banbury, but not before heading over to Witney, and meeting Nick & Vicky to talk colour schemes!

Me and my birthday cake

I had already decided I wanted it green, and Nick said that he had Kawasaki Green in stock. He then said he could add some ‘sparkle’ to the green, and let me choose. I chose a sunkiss Orange flake, to go on top of the green. Dad wasn’t sure, especially as he had already bought a new blue tyre for my back wheel.

A week later, and dad had completely stripped the bike down to the frame (on the kitchen table) and we had dropped it off.

Dad taking over the kitchen table!

Nick worked his magic, and on Bank holiday Monday, Nick sent over some pictures to show that he had finished. It looked fantastic!!

The next day, we all headed to Witney  to meet Nick and Vicky to collect my frame. It looked so much better than it did in the pictures, and with the metal flake in the sunshine, it really did look good-It was a great colour combination ( much to Dad’s relief ) I bought Nick & Vicky a card to say thank you and to show my appreciation. They really had put a lot of time and effort into making it special, and on top of it all, they refused to charge us for the work and done it all for me and my Superhero Triathlon – Thanks guys!!

Nick from Envy Coating, and me & my new frame

Dad spent the next few nights reassembling the bike, and fitted all my new parts-a bottle holder on the back of the seat, new tyres all round, and my favorite part, a head rest that my Nan bought me for my birthday.

Nearly there

I finally got to head out and give it a try, ahead of my next bit of exciting news – An invitation to  visit  Dorney Lake and take part in a mini Triathlon, meet the Superhero Team and take part in filming for a documentary………More in my next post!

It’s a thumbs up from me!

Fundraising pages are now *LIVE*

I’m pleased to announce that my 2 different  fundraising pages are now live! You can find the links on the homepage and clicking Sponsor Link.  I have outlined the differences between the two links on that page. If you choose to sponsor me, I thank you immensely.

Don’t forget – You can keep up to date with my progress by registering at the bottom of the page, and be some of the first to know our exciting news that we cannot wait to share in the coming days!

Sponsorship link

We’ve added the first of two sponsorship links that can be found on the homepage. The second link will follow in the coming days. You can follow our updates by signing up at the bottom of the homepage.

Thanks, Darren, Nicki, Ben & Oscar

**NEWSFLASH**

Today, Mum & Dad received a phone call with some Super Super Super Exciting‘  news!!

We desperately want to share it with you all, but we just need to wait for an email with all the exact details, before we can tell the world.

Watch-this-space!!

 

 

News is spreading!!

A Little trip along the Roman Road near where we live

Things have been ‘super’ busy lately, but that hasn’t stopped me from heading out and clocking up some miles.

It’s better late than never, but I’m excited to tell you all that I made it into the local papers. A journalist from The Oxford Mail, called dad at work to interview him on my behalf. We sent a couple of pictures along of me on my trike, so they could put it with my write up. You can follow what they wrote about me and The Superhero Tri, by clicking this link: http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/15186396.__39_Superhero__39__schoolboy_to_join_television_star_at_disabled_friendly_sports_day/

I hope you enjoy it as much as we all do. When we found out which day it was going to be out, Dad took me to the papershop to grab some copies to show my friends. The teachers at school cut one out and laminated it for me to take home. Everyone was really excited to read the news.

Apparently, we will be interviewed on local radio in the coming months, which is something else exciting to look forward to. For now though, i’m going to concentrate on getting fit, and race ready, by getting out on some rides around where we live.