Marine’s Peter McCormack has been called the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League’s answer to Bradley Wiggins in the past for his fundraising exploits and he’ll be at it again next Saturday when the Mariners travel to Whitby Town.
The 53-year-old chairman of the club’s supporters group and veteran fellow fundraiser Rick Halsall are setting off on the 177 miles trip across the Pennines on Friday with a target of raising £1500 towards the Marine Travel Arena development fund.
Happy to describe themselves as “lycra mad loonies”, in the last eight years the duo have raised in excess of £80,000 for the Multiple Sclerosis Trust and other good causes including their club’s on-going ground appeal.
While McCormack raised more than a £1000 on his sole trek to Croft Park, the challenges they’ve overcome together have included cycling from Blackpool to Paris and along with a fan from Mickleover, from London to the Blackpool Hilton to coincide with the EVO-STIK NPL’s AGM and awards night.
The pair are expecting a warm welcome from the fans who’ll be at the Turnbull Ground when they arrive for the Premier Division clash with the Seasiders and hoping they’ll dig deep.
A club spokesman said: “Two seasons ago Peter did a solo cycle to Blyth Spartans but this time thought it would be great to cycle to Whitby which has to be the friendliest club in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League.”
Halsall, whose wife Carol is battling the condition, was awarded the British Empire Medal for his charity rides in aid of the Multiple Sclerosis Trust, his gruelling adventures including trips across China, Africa’s Sahara desert and even up and over the mountains of Peru in South America.
The charity funds research into the condition which effects 100,000 people in the UK with thousands more going undiagnosed as it is often difficult for doctors to spot at an early stage and can strike the young and old alike.