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Winchester PPP is a resounding success

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Competitors around the world have battled it out in the first virtual Winchester PPP, helping to raise £5,400 for Macmillan Cancer Support.

The 16th Winchester Pedal Paddle Pace finished on Sunday, 12 July, with hundreds of participants taking part in the unique triathlon. The event was supported by Forresters as headline sponsors.

In previous years competitors have completed a 20km bike ride through the glorious Hampshire countryside, followed by a 5k run and a 2km kayak race. However, recent government restrictions led the organisers to create a virtual event where participants completed the cycling and running parts of the triathlon in their own time – and then chose any 15 minute activity.

Mike Sharpe, organiser of the Winchester PPP, said the virtual event attracted attention around the world. “We had competitors taking part in a number of countries including the United States, Dubai, Canada and Croatia,” he explained. “We have been absolutely delighted with the response we’ve had to this year’s virtual event, and with the amount raised. We were going to cancel the event this year, but thanks to extensive coverage on social media a lot of people picked up on the virtual triathlon and made it a real success. We are thrilled that Forresters has agreed to be headline sponsor of the race for another two years – giving us the support we need to pass on as much money as we can to Macmillan Cancer Support”.

The winners of the 2020 event included Nick Wood who took the title of fastest male with a time of one hour and seven minutes and Lauren Smith who was fastest female with a time of one hour and 17 minutes, both were from Winchester. Also, the fastest team was Team TOMAGI from Lee-on-the-Solent and Colden Common – they completed the event in one hour and 29 minutes.

Tony Higginson, who put Team TOMAGI together, said: “We heard about the virtual PPP locally and it was such a good idea to be able to nominate an activity and go for it at a time of your own choosing. My own reason for supporting Macmillan comes from my own experience of losing my sister, Amanda, to cancer – and the fact that she was able to stay at home until she died because of the care that was available to her. The symbol of the charity that cared for her was a butterfly, so I put one on my bike and took it to Scotland and felt she was with me for the ride. Macmillan nurses are clearly wonderful people, who help many cancer sufferers, so I was pleased to raise money for them”.

Forresters’ managing partner Lloyd Hoarton, based in our Southampton office, commented: “We are proud to be headline sponsors of the Winchester PPP which, to date, has raised more than £150,000 to help support people with cancer. This year we entered five teams, and each one put in a fantastic effort to get out cycling and running, as well as doing their chosen sport. We are thrilled to be supporting the Winchester PPP for the next two years and continuing to help raise vital funds for Macmillan Cancer Support”.

Ryan Howarth, fundraising manager at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “At Macmillan, we know how cancer can affect everything – not just your health. We’re here to help people live life, no matter what, but we can’t do this without the amazing people who fundraise for us. That is why we are so incredibly grateful for the continued support of the Winchester PPP committee and Forresters. We are almost entirely funded by donations and simply cannot support the growing number of people who need us without the help of our amazing supporters. So to everyone who helped make the virtual PPP possible, thank you all for your hard work and support”.