Congratulations to everyone who participated in the Hudson RPO – Cancer Research UK charity challenge!
Representing a variety of RPO teams, and operating with varying levels of athletic experience, the group first cycled nearly 140 miles from Edinburgh to the Lake District.
They then swam a chilly 500 meters before hiking 10 miles up Hellvelyn mountain, the UK’s third biggest mountain.
The team persevered over an exhausting, yet triumphant, three days.
RPO manager Jared Massey led our team on this epic adventure. In the weeks preceding the challenge, Jared frequently posted training updates that explored the parallels between endurance training and work attitude.
While training, he said: “I surround myself with experts and people who are different to me, as I will never pretend to be the best in everything in fitness or at work. By doing this, the scope for excellence is far greater. It pushes all of us to new heights.”
The effort paid off, with more than £2,500 raised for Cancer Research UK, in memory of one of Jared’s friends, Andy King.
Upon completing the challenge, Jared said: “It was an amazing weekend being surrounded by amazing people. This is exactly what we enjoy at Hudson RPO: brilliant, genuine people who can achieve anything.”
Discover some of the team’s highlights and heartfelt reflections below. If you missed your chance to participate, you can still donate here.
Experience the spirit of the event
Thanks to event participant and sourcing specialist Conrad Rapp for creating this brilliant celebration video! Enjoy.
‘What we accomplished was extraordinary’
Event recap by Jared Massey
We were thrilled in the morning that so many of the COE were there to cheer us on from the start and we could not wait to get started, what a group have fabulous people the COE are.
The first day was an interesting day and we will be talking about it for years. A nasty puncture after only two miles for Conrad Rapp, other members of the team getting lost on several occasions, going straight into a strong 30 mph headwind, and more to come after someone even lost their balance when a cat ran across them!
We were all basically scattered around Scotland. We couldn’t just wait for each other, or it wouldn’t have been possible to complete the distances we wanted too, but we all met up at the hotel at the end of the day and discussed our incredible journey. The toughness of it all was depicted when we cycled past the highest village in Scotland .
The highlights of the first day were probably zooming down a steep hill after a tough climb and then when we stopped off at a very local pub, got talking to some old locals who then gave me money for the event. There are some wonderful characters out there.
It was the longest day of the event, with some of us completing 85 miles and not arriving at the hotel until 8.30pm.
We all got up the next day and set off for Gretna Green. That day we were all in great spirits after a lovely evening and hearty breakfast in the morning, some even took in the famous landmarks of this ‘married town’.
We all set off together. It was great that for some of the journey we could all cycle together. The trip was never about us all completing everything, it was about people taking part and enjoying it. Everyone did exactly that.
Along the way, we sang songs, took photos and videos, stopping off at the pub for a drink on the way. It was a wonderful day with some really good cycling, fantastic scenery and togetherness. We rewarded ourselves that evening with a Mexican meal and even a tequila.
The next day was up early, with the weather being very cold and rainy. It was time for the open-water swim at Ullswater. Liga Dundure and I did this. We had to wear some less than attractive pink hats, one to wear on my next Saturday night out. It was fantastic that so many people from my hometown as well as the CoE guys came to watch and cheer us on.
Gee-whiz, was it cold! The water was 11 degrees and you could not catch your breath. We ended up singing ‘God Save the Queen’ while we were in the water, which was very bizarre.
Myself and Liga started at the back and when an elderly lady asked had we done any open water swimming before, from which we both said no, she explained how ‘we are mad but she would look after us’. Again, a great moment about how wonderful people can be. We were cheered on all the way and was a great sense of achievement. Special mention to Liga, who was at one point quite scared and thinking of doing it… she got through that and was so elated as she should be at completing the race.
Following the swim, we went straight off to start meeting people for the walk, all the COE were joined by about 20 people from all over the country who were my family and friends. It was great to see how everyone got on together and supported each other through the walk. The plan always was that all would get to a place called Red Tarn which was about 4 miles into the walk and then some would start heading down the other side, for some we did the very difficult and at times squirrels edge/striders edge which took you to the summit of the mountain.
Once we got to the top I think that was the biggest sense of achievement as was really tough. It then got quite emotional seeing big piles of stones to depict the summit. We had big flags of Andy, little piles of stones that were painted by children to add to the rocks and generally lots of hugs and emotion.
We were then meant to have champagne at the top but we still had a tricky small decent to take care of, so we waited until we did that before popping the corks and in the pouring rain! A poignant moment.
So we had almost done but then you cannot legislate how hard a three-mile or so decent is. People finished at different stages and the wonderful thing is we all waited at the bottom on a wall and each time someone appeared round the corner after completing, we gave them thunderous applause and big high-fives.
Later, we all met at a bar on Ullswater lakes called the Ramblers. Andy’s family was there, including his mum, and there were tears of joy from her about what we as Hudson RPO had done for Andy. It’ll live with us forever.
There was great satisfaction for everyone at Hudson RPO. In linking it to Hudson RPO, our biggest strength is that we just truly care about what we do, and we made things happen. There were difficulties along the way, and we were honest about our strengths and weaknesses, but what we accomplished was extraordinary.
Here’s to next year’s challenge and some more great memories and sense of achievement, but most of all, to us coming together as one team to achieve great things.
Setting off from Edinburgh
Team gratitude, excitement, and camaraderie
Get In Touch