AN ULVERSTON man has completed a mammoth bike ride to raise nearly £500 for the organisation that saved his life.

Paramedic Jack Talbot added 30 miles to the already-formidable route traversed by cyclists in the Fred Whitton Challenge, an annual 113-mile ride around the Lake District.

Numerous fundraising activities have enabled Mr Talbot, 28, to donate a total of more than £10,000 to the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) since the organisation saved his life four years ago.

In 2017, Mr Talbot suffered horrific injuries after being the victim of a hit-and-run while out on his bike in Ulverston.

GNAAS was called upon and flew him to Royal Preston Hospital.

He spent 13 days in a coma and a total of five weeks in hospital, but eventually made a miraculous recovery.

The keen athlete said his latest fundraiser ‘needed to be a challenge’.

“I cycle a lot, so it needed to be something to properly deserve people’s donations,” he said.

“And, again, the reason for fundraising for them has always been after they saved my life in 2017 after I got hit by the car.

“I wouldn’t be here without them, so I’ll forever be indebted to them.

“They bring the doctors, they bring the hospital to the side of the road, and it’s very often the difference between life and death.”

He described the challenge as ‘probably the hardest I’ve ever done’ and said his rear brake was rubbing for the duration of the ride.

“I only realised when I got to the top of the Hardknott Pass,” he said.

“The Hardknott Pass is one of the hardest climbs in England, I’ve done it before.

“It felt it was harder than it should have been – I got to the top and I realised why.”

He set a target of £150 but has smashed that, with the JustGiving page standing at £480 at the time of writing.

“It’s all about the fundraising, it’s all about giving something back to the air ambulance,” said Mr Talbot.

“It’s been a mega-tough year for everybody, but for charities in particular.

“Any fundraising events, any big stuff that they’d normally do has been cancelled.

“Anybody could need them [GNAAS], especially living in Cumbria where we are – we’re so rural, we’re so far away from any major hospitals.”

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