I am a 39 year old working in finance in Tokyo, Japan.
I have been a keen cyclist and triathlete for about 6 years
having allowed myself to get very overweight and out
of shape. This will be my third time racing RAAM
having competed in 2011 as part of a 4 man team, and 2013
in a pair. Although RAAM is an incredibly tough
event i have found it to be an incredibly life affirming
and rewarding event, due in no small part to the
money we have raised for charity over the last few years.
The last two occasions i raced RAAM i had the great
privilege to have my father, David on the support crew who
died last November after a long illness with cancer and for
this reason this years race and raising money for two great
cancer charities resonates even more strongly than in the past.
I had the great privilege of having my wonderful father
along as support crew for both of my previous crossings.
Sadly he died from the very disease we were raising money to
battle at the end of last year and, although his endless enthusiasm,
levity and not to mention bodging skills will be sorely
missed on this attempt I doubt there will be a time in the
race when he wont be in my mind.
As a lifetime sports nut, part time cyclist, part time Real
Estate executive, full time husband and father (just don't ask
Marina she would put this in the part time bracket)... an
opportunity to participate in the worlds most grueling bike race
was just too much to pass on. Watching and supporting our
fellow team member Jamie compete in and, complete RAAM twice,
was enough inspiration for Chris and I and so we decided 2015 was
our turn. Jamie was quickly recruited along with Melbourne/Tokyo
sporting legend Dan McGrath and the Crank Addicts Tokyo was formed.
With team sports, Cricket, Football (Soccer), Touch Football and AFL
being my focus growing up cycling was always secondary and something
I did as a mechanism to keep fit.... but in 2012 with the body not
getting any younger i decided to take up triathlon and a true love
affair with my bicycles began.
Today, Cycling along with work and family (not necessarily in that order!!!)
are my passions... the ability to get on the bike, escape the city, discover
new places and undertake amazing adventures, all with great friends
is a blessing.
The opportunity to compete in this race, raise money for our cancer charities,
contribute just a little bit in the fight to erradicate this nasty disease and
remember all those who have been taken from us is truly humbling.
Personally i will have my great mate Darren 'Fumsy' Turner with me
throughout the entire challenge, a great man taken way too early.
I am 32 years old and have lived in Tokyo for 7 years working for Totan ICAP
as a Yen Options Broker. I've been married for 2.5 years
to my incredibly supportive and wonderful wife Yurie.
After moving to Tokyo I started to gain a lot of weight, and not
living a particularlyhealthy (although definitely fun!) lifestyle.
When I moved to Japan I weighed
73kg and by 2011 I was 95kg and I felt rubbish the whole time,
so with some encouragement from friends I bought a bike
and started cycling around Tokyo on the weekends and swimming
during the week, I then decided to set myself a target of completing
a triathlon, which I did in March 2012 and since then I've been
addicted to endurance sports, completing many more triathlons,
running, cycling and swimming races. I now weigh
67kg– 95kg is a distant memory!
After watching Jamie complete Race Across America in 2011 and
2013 Craig and I had both become quite stuck on the idea of
doing the race ourselves, Jamie didn’t take much convincing
and as soon as we mentioned it to Danno he was in like a shot!
Our team was set and the training begun… we’re raising money for two
great cancer charities in the UK and Australia, Cancer is a terrible
disease and any difference we can make to people’s lives who
are impacted by this disease make it all the more worthwhile. Now all
we have to do is finish the world’s toughest bike race in under 7 days
so we can finish Friday night and go nuts in Annapolis!!!
Sharing a similar trait with teammate Craig Huddleston, I too am a sports tragic
and feasted on a variety of sports growing up with football and cricket
occupying most of my leisure time. Having only taken up cycling 2.5 years back
definitely puts me in the rookie category in our strong Crank Addicts Tokyo team,
but am hoping my mental strength, honed thru many hours of playing
Battleship and Yahtzee in a competitive family environment will hold
me in good stead to tackle RAAM.
Having backpacked the US from East coast to West coast as a 19yo with
a limited budget and even more limited range of fresh underpants,
I couldn't pass up this new challenge to see the US from a different vantage point.
To do so with our traveling convoy of 3 vehicles and 12 people,
whilst raising money for charity is surely going to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience
that I can't wait to begin.