A group of 88 riders, led by world-famous Argentine rugby legend Hugo Porta, have cycled parts of the route of the 2014 Tour de France to raise funds for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation.
Le Grand Départ of the 2014 Tour takes place in Yorkshire on July 5, but Laureus cyclists decided to get in first taking in sections of Stages One and Two, which last year’s winner Chris Froome and the greatest road racers in the world will soon be tackling.
While Froome will be maintaining a somewhat different timetable to the Laureus riders, there was no disguising the passion and the determination with which ‘Porta’s Peloton’, mainly featuring riders from financial services company St James’s Place, coped with the challenge, covering 200 miles over three days. Riders from firms DAC Beachcroft and AXA were also part of the group.
Hugo Porta, who played 58 times for the Argentine rugby team, said: “I was very happy to support the St James’s Place ‘Tour de Yorkshire’ with such a good group of people who are very passionate about cycling and charity. It was a challenging ride and I will certainly enjoy watching the Tour knowing that I conquered some of those climbs and descents. It is great to see the fundraising culture so alive in the United Kingdom and hopefully this can spread to other countries because it can make such a difference to young people that need our help.”
The ride hopes to raise £170,000, out of which £60,000 will go to Laureus Sport for Good Foundation partner Street League, which established a team in Leeds last year with support from St. James’ Place Foundation and Laureus.
Participants come from a range of backgrounds including homelessness, drug and alcohol abuse, displacement, unemployment, crime, learning difficulties and mental health. Street League delivers employability and life skills, with three out of every four graduates going on to get a job or return to education and training.