HUDDERSFIELD Town's fundraising phenomenon Pedal for Pounds is back for 2013 – with more than a passing resemblance to another great cycling challenge.
Pedal for Pounds 4, or P4P4 for short, will take the form of a Tour de Yorkshire.
Previous bike rides have been long hauls to Southend and Brighton then from Yeovil to Huddersfield, but next year’s test – with a nod to the Tour de France won by Bradley Wiggins – takes place around God’s Own County.
This year’s ride, again in aid of Town’s Keep It Up campaign, was launched at the club’s Canalside complex last night.
P4P4 will start in Huddersfield on Wednesday May 1 with cyclists taking a circular 240-mile route around Yorkshire heading out to Hull, Scarborough and Harrogate before landing back at the John Smith’s Stadium in time for Town’s last home game of the season against Barnsley.
Town chairman Dean Hoyle, commercial director Sean Jarvis and club ambassador Andy Booth will all take part again.
The ride has grown in popularity every year and this year saw 280 riders pedal the 260 miles from Yeovil to Huddersfield in gruelling weather conditions.
Despite the tough nature of the event, cyclists have been clamouring to go for it again.
Sean said: “This announcement has been a long time coming.
“Fans have been waiting since the epic Pedal for Pounds 3 ride finished to find out what we have in store for Pedal for Pounds 4.
“We’re doing something a bit different this time by starting and ending the ride in Huddersfield, but by keeping the route in Yorkshire I really think this ride will be the best one yet.”
The Keep It Up campaign splits money between the Yorkshire Air Ambulance and the club’s Academy.
Since 2009 it has raised £720,000 with some £500,000 coming from the three bike rides alone.
The club’s aim is to break the magic £1 million barrier and Sean said: “I would urge anyone who wants to have some fun raise funds for the Keep It Up campaign and have what will probably be one of the best experiences in their lives to sign up. You won’t regret it.”
Riders are asked to set themselves a £1,000 fundraising target.
One of the first riders to sign up was Derek Highe, 54, of Mirfield, who caught the cycling bug with the Yeovil ride.
“It’s great that they are keeping it local this time with the Tour de Yorkshire,” he said.
“Pedal for Pounds is a fantastic experience. It’s hard but that’s the whole point of it.
“It has to be punishing and a proper challenge if you are asking people for their hard earned money.”
Derek took up cycling for the Yeovil ride – and is now hardly off his bike.
“I have continued to cycle throughout the summer,” he said. “It’s something I have really taken to – unlike Dean Hoyle who doesn’t seem to do any training at all!”
To sign up for P4P4 go to www.htafc.com or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org