Cycling-mad pensioner Ricky Hearn is getting back in the saddle for another mammoth bike challenge.
The 75-year-old, of Horsforth, will embark on a 780km journey around part of the North Sea cycle route later this month - setting off from Den Helder in Holland and finishing in Hamburg, Germany.
It will be the latest long-distance challenge to add to his impressive list which includes Land’s End to John O’Groats, cycling the Danube and various rides in Spain - since he started riding only a few years ago.
Mr Hearn said the ride - called the EuroVelo 12 - should take 10 to 14 days, depending on the weather. He said: “I’ve been out there before and the wind, especially down the North Sea coast, is so strong that you have to get off and push.”
Alongside Mr Hearn will be cycling pal David Gladman, 64, of Moortown, who he met through an appeal in the YEP for a companion for his 2012 ride through the Pyrenees to Santiago de Compostella in northern Spain.
Mr Hearn added: “I just like the challenge and I like the adventure - of going to a place where you can’t speak the language and finding your way through the countryside.”
The pair’s new trek sets off on September 15 and raises money for the British Heart Foundation and Cancer Research UK. Mr Hearn chose the British Heart Foundation after receiving care from Leeds General Infirmary for a heart condition. This year he will be cycling on a Pedelec - a half electric bike - to help his heart on uphill climbs.
To sponsor him, visit www.justgiving.com/ricky-hearn for Cancer Research UK, www.justgiving.com/ricky-hearn1 for British Heart Foundation or phone him on 0113 2818176.