Hogan Lovells Vietnam Challenge Ride 2017
Me and 19 other riders from Hogan Lovells and its clients, completed our 3 day, 450 km cycling challenge in support of Newborns Vietnam last week. Everyone had trained hard for the event, but it would have been very difficult to properly prepare for what awaited us in Vietnam. The terrain was tough, with 2,700 meters of climbing on the first day alone, but what really defined the challenge was the temperature, which exceeded 40 degrees Celsius on each day. It was brutal.
Despite this, all of the riders returned home safely, although the heat did take its toll. It was a heroic cycle by all, and our immense thanks go to the ride captains who got us all around the course safely.
This is a link to our photo album for you to flick through, I hope it gives some indication of the effort the riders put into the ride, the splendour of the scenery through which we were pedalling, and the camaraderie amongst the group. When we got to the top of the Hai Van Pass having just completed an 8km climb, the sense of relief, elation, pride and togetherness was unbelievable. And the descent was exhilarating! I hit 65km/h, I’m sure some of the others hit higher top speeds.
It was an amazing trip, and if we needed any reminder of why we were doing it, the visit to the neonatal unit at the Da Nang Hospital for Women and Children provided it very clearly. These babies are tiny, some of them born as early as 25 weeks. By providing equipment, facilities and medical training, it allows the neonatal babies to survive their first few days and weeks, Newborns Vietnam is literally giving the gift of life to countless babies in Vietnam.