Only seven days to go until Grant Lottering takes on the world’s toughest solo fundraising ride. Riding to raise funds for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, the miracle cyclist will attempt to cycle over 40 mountains in the French Alps, climbing a staggering 44 700m, over a distance of 1 800km, in under 96 hours.
“It’s difficult for most people to comprehend the enormity of the challenge I’ve set myself, but what I’m attempting in the Im’possible Tour IV is equivalent to climbing Mount Everest five times in one ride,” explains Lottering.
At 174km and 5 000m of climbing, La Marmotte is considered one of the toughest amateur events in the world and comparable to the most challenging high mountain stages of the Tour de France. The route includes the Col du Glandon (22km), Col du Telegraphe (13km), Col du Galibier (17km), and finishes on the summit of the famous Alpe d’Huez climb (13km). Lottering will have to ride over each of these mountains 10 times within four days, and on just six hours of sleep.
“When you take on a physical challenge as big as this, mental preparation and visualisation is vital. I also have to remind myself why I’m doing this. First and foremost, it’s to raise funds for underprivileged children in projects supported by Laureus,” says Lottering. “Secondly, it’s to prove to myself, and everyone out there, that achieving the impossible is possible.”
In 2013, Grant Lottering survived a near-fatal cycling accident during a world championship preparation race in Trento, Italy. Refusing to accept the doctors’ prognosis that he would never cycle again, Lottering returned to the Alps a year later for his first Im’possible Tour, finishing the race that nearly claimed his life. He has gone on to raise more than R2 million for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation through his Im’possible I, II and III Tours. Last year, he also survived a cancer scare.
“When we keep perspective of where we have come from and what we have overcome, it makes challenges ahead seem a tad smaller,” says Lottering. “And I couldn’t do any of this without God, my support team and title sponsors. A big thank you to the headline sponsors of Im’possible IV Tour: Mercedes-Benz South Africa, IWC Schaffhausen and VO Connect Business Solutions.
Help Grant reach his fundraising target by visiting www.grantlottering.com. Prizes for donors will be up for grabs during the four-day ride (07h00 2 July 2017 through to 07h00 6 July 2017) – simply donate more than R350 and post a message of encouragement to Grant’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts using the hashtag #supportgrant! You can also follow Grant’s extraordinary 2017 Im’possible Tour IV journey on Facebook: www.facebook.com/grant.lottering.21713 Instagram: www.instagram.com/glottering/ or Twitter: www.twitter.com/mglottering.
Morné du Plessis, Laureus Sport for Good Foundation South Africa Chairman says: “Once again Grant Lottering is pushing the boundaries of what is possible even further with this brave new challenge in 2017. We watched in 2014 in disbelief when he completed the La Marmotte one year after his horrendous crash. We then watched Grant take on and successfully complete his first Im’possible Tour which was to ride almost 500kms within 24 hours non-stop. In 2016 Grant doubled down and set a target of riding almost 1 000kms within 48 hours non-stop and once again this man’s iron will and determination in the face of an unthinkable obstacle shone through. All of this has been done in the name of, and in support of, the thousands of children Laureus supports through the sport for development programmes we fund in South Africa. And now in 2017, we once again hold our collective breath as we watch Grant attempt the world’s toughest solo fundraising ride, again in aid of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and we could not be prouder of what he has done and continues to do for us in his role as a Laureus Ambassador. We have no doubt Grant will be successful once again and reaffirm his core message which is that, in life, anything is possible!””
Mercedes-Benz South Africa is proud to be associated with the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation; and as Country Patron, the company endeavours to support efforts aimed at raising additional funds in aid of the Foundation. This year Mercedes-Benz South Africa and Mercedes-Benz Financial Services South Africa supports Grant Lottering’s Im’possible Tour 2017 as vehicle sponsor while in Europe for the challenge, as well as with financial contributions towards the fundraising drive for Laureus Sport for Good Foundation.
Wayne Mackenzie, Chief Operations Officer at VO Connect says: “We are extremely honored and proud to be associated with the Im’possible Tour IV! Grant, you inspire all of us to keep pushing even when the task at hand looks impossible! Dig deep, ride safe, we are all routing for you!”