£Thousands Raised for Charity as Paralysed Former Jockey Completes 140-mile Hand Cycle Challenge

By Nick Seddon

A paralysed former jockey has completed a 140 mile hand cycling challenge after riding from Cheltenham Racecourse to Newmarket’s July Course, raising thousands of pounds for two charities which have helped with his rehabilitation.

 

Jacob Pritchard Webb was enjoying a highly-promising riding career in France before an accident at Auteuil in June 2020 left him with life-changing injuries. However, it has not stopped him from living life to the full and he set off on his three-day fundraiser on Thursday 7th July.

The 25 year old was riding in support of both the Injured Jockeys Fund and the Matt Hampson Foundation and was joined by a star-studded group of people from the racing world, including 20-times champion Jump jockey Sir AP McCoy.

Pritchard Webb and his travelling party were given a standing ovation as they arrived at the entrance to Newmarket’s July Course on Darley July Cup Day on Saturday afternoon.

And speaking at the finish line he admitted: “The last three days have probably been the most physically demanding I’ve ever endured. I thought seven or so years ago that pushing a point-to-point horse round a track for three miles was difficult but this absolutely trumped that!

“I’m slightly overwhelmed to be honest. The support and donations have been amazing and everyone who’s got involved have just been fantastic. Without those people I just wouldn’t have got up that hill on that first day – AP literally took his shoes off and pushed me up! We were not going to be defeated.

“There are too many people to thank, but I owe so much gratitude to my mum and dad for doing it with me. I’m feeling a bit achy and sore now but I’m hoping a bit of alcohol will numb the pain! I’m on champagne now and that’s going down a treat.”

Pritchard Webb, who is forging a successful TV career as a pundit on Sky Sports Racing and in bloodstock, had already raised £13,000 by the time he had crossed the line at Newmarket and extra publicity is helping that figure to rise even after the challenge.

He added: “I’m more emotional than I thought I would be, I suppose it’s all of the effort I had to put in to be able to complete that. The last three months have just been exhausting and trying to have a normal work life alongside all of the organisation and training which comes with this has just been very difficult.

“I didn’t want to leave any stone unturned through training and I feel like I’ve done that well enough because I’ve got here ok. It’s been an experience in itself from just start to finish, from April until now, and it’s very rewarding to get over the finish line. I can enjoy it now because I didn’t enjoy the last three days!

“We’ve added about £5,000 to the total since Thursday morning, which is fantastic. If we can keep that going now towards the end of next week it would be the icing on the cake.

“If you split that amount down the middle, it’s a huge amount of money for the charities. A wheelchair is £5,500, which is a lot of money, and it’s that person’s shoe. It’s their independence and splitting donations down the middle means that this money can go towards giving somebody else a better life and having more independence.

“The whole point of this was to raise awareness of what is possible after a spinal cord injury and I’d like to think that I’ve proved that something like this is possible. You can push yourself to do some incredible stuff.”

·        To sponsor Jacob, please go to: https://www.sponsorme.co.uk/jacobwebb/the-cross-countys-cycle-challenge.aspx

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