On July 1st, PSCA staff member Chris Jones was sat atop the Les Deux Alpes glacier, at an altitude of 12,500ft, ready to ride a course that would take him almost 8,000ft down. He was hoping to become the first person in the world to complete the Mountain of Hell race on an electric mountain bike.
The Mountain of Hell race is one of the world’s longest and toughest downhill mountain bike races, though it does have some sections of climbing (hence Chris’ need for an assisted bike). This year, almost 800 competitors lined up at the top of the glacier, for the mass start. During the glacier descent, Chris reached an impressive speed of 92.1Kmh, though the top speed, recorded by a speed gun at the bottom of the glacier, was a staggering 127Kmh!!!
Chris was taking part in the race with the backing of Help for Heroes, as part of a team of wounded, injured, or sick servicemen and women. An hour and a half after setting off, the team arrived at the base of the mountain, where Chris became the first person in the world to complete the race on an eMTB. This was because, through Help for Heroes, Chris was given special dispensation to use an electrically assisted bike, as his injuries mean he could not pedal a normal bike. Despite the assistance, Chris suffered considerably on the descent, but enjoyed it enough to want to do it again!
Chris runs the school’s Duke of Edinburgh’s Award programme, the Mountain Bike Club, and is taking on the role of Work Skills Coordinator. He hopes that his achievements will inspire students to achieve their own great things, and he is ready and willing to help them on that journey.