Route 66 – Imran
supporter, Imran Mughal has challenged himself to cycle the world famous Route
66. Imran will start his challenge of cycling 3,200 miles on 10th of
May to give HOPE of life to thousands of poor cancer victims. This is a
phenomenal challenge for any professional athlete but for a normal individual it
is just amazing! Therefore we request that you support him in his selfless
cause by donating generously at his just giving page at:
challenge will not only raise funds for IKCA but also raise awareness of the
plight of cancer patients in Pakistan. We also hope that Iman’s challenge will
inspire others to set up similar challenges and events to help the cancer
“If I can
through my cycling challenge raise awareness and funds, with the help of any
donations, however big or small, from the generosity of people, from all over,
and have even the smallest of impact in making any difference for those who
suffer from cancer, then this will be the biggest achievement of my life without
a shadow of a doubt!” Imran Mughal
Imran achieve his target of raising £10,000 for the cancer victims and also send
messages of support.
“It was by
chance whilst out on a bike ride to Otley near Leeds one day that I passed by a
man in his 20’s who was cycle touring several countries of Europe. I remember
looking at the heavy laden bike with all the luggage and equipment and being
fascinated. I thought straight away that this is what I have been looking for.
I became friends with this cycle tourer who was from Holland. We arranged for
the following year in 2003 to do some cycle touring of Holland but unfortunately
I was a victim of a hit and run accident whilst out on a training ride in and I
broke my wrist so could not make a trip to Holland.
recovered, my friend in Holland then suggested a massive trip going through 7
European countries which included the entire length of the Alps, all within a
month. I was daunted by this at first as I thought there is no way my body is
capable of hauling a heavy laden bike through mountain pass after mountain pass.
However, at the same time I was excited at the thought of the challenge.
struggle from heat, terrain, weather, mechanical problems and everything in
between, my friend and I managed to complete the trip. This experience led me to
tour Scotland, Norway and Sweden in the following year.
My love of the bicycle goes
back to as far as I can think. I remember when I walked into my house after
school, I must have been about 4 or 5 years old, and I saw this huge cardboard
box with “Raleigh” written on it and a picture of a bike with stabilizers. I was
told by my mother it was for me. I got out on the bike for the first time at my
local park and the feeling of freedom and going at a speed, by simply turning
the pedals, was of one that every kid feels riding a bike for the first time.
That feeling of freedom and first set of wheels was absolute total fun!
years as I grew, my grandfather who was a big influence on my love of bicycles
felt it was time for an upgrade and took me several times to the local second
hand shop to buy bigger size bikes with gears and other fancy stuff. I fondly
remember the Peugeot racer bike he got me and how fast it felt and he also
taught me basic mechanics like fixing punctures and tightening worn brakes.
As the years
went by I took another avenue in my 20’s and started competing in races which
were both very challenging and enjoyable. This also made me buy more advanced
equipment so I was able to compete. However, what I really wanted to do was, to
combine my love of cycling and travelling but didn't quite know how.
another great friend and I cycled from Lands End to John O’ Groats, covering
1300 miles in 10 days. This was a great trip and brilliant way to see the land.
However, I could not help feeling a form of regret knowing that the large
cycling trips I have done were not for charity and that they had potential
however big or small to raise funds and awareness for worthy causes.”
For this reason, I have
planned my biggest and most challenging journey on the bike to date. In May
2012, I hope to cycle the entire length of the world famous American Route 66
starting from Chicago and finishes in Los Angeles. This includes a huge detour
to Monument Valley and Grand Canyon, with the significance being that it's one
of the longest and most famous roads in the world. I then go further from Los
Angeles to San Francisco.
America and why Route 66?
The thought of
doing this did not even occur until I saw Billy Connolly’s documentary of Route
66 which did on a motor trike. At the very end he says “Route
66 is like life, complicated but well worth the effort, you should try it”.
I thought maybe this is the challenge I have been looking for. I am planning on
cycling the entire 2,600 miles from Chicago to Los Angeles within 30 days and
then go a further 600 miles to San Francisco from Los Angeles.
It will be a
huge challenge in every aspect as I will be self supported on a bike carrying
all my camping equipment and other necessary items. The journey will take me
through subtle and drastic temperature and topographical changes through 9
states and 3 time zones. I will go through states where tornadoes are rife at
that time of year (quite worrying) as well as contending with the heat and
mountainous terrain of New Mexico, Utah, Arizona and California and because my
direction is from east to west then chances are I will predominantly be
confronted by headwinds as a lot of the wind in America blows from the Pacific
which will make the cycling harder!
journey will be over 3,200 miles in distance with a total of 26,700 meters of
climbing which is an altitude equivalent of going up Mount Everest 3 times!
My first priority was to
select a worthwhile cause that I can do this for and spread awareness. My uncle
suggested I do it for Imran Khan Cancer Appeal (IKCA) as he and his son had done
the Leeds half marathon with 5 other runners and managed to raise over £3,000.
I started looking into the charity and it amazed me seeing other challenges
people had done for this great cause.
witnessed the pain and suffering of his mother, Shaukat Khanum, going through
cancer which she eventually passed away to in 1985. He also saw the pain and
suffering of other families going through exactly the same and knew that much
more needed to be done. After several years of intense efforts of fundraising
and campaigning, the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Research Centre
was established in 1994.
Prior to the
establishment of the hospital in 1994, no comprehensive facility dedicated to
the diagnosis and treatment of cancer existed in Pakistan. Over the last 17
years, the hospital has established itself as a centre of excellence providing
comprehensive care, free of charge, to thousands of cancer patients. It is
predominantly dependant on charitable donations. The amount spent on providing
free treatment to patients during this period is well over $130 million.
I am amazed at
the work IKCA does and it really brings the meaning of the word 'Zakat' to the
forefront. If I can through my cycling challenge raise awareness and funds, with
the help of any donations, however big or small, from the generosity of people,
from all over, and have even the smallest of impact in making any difference for
those who suffer from cancer, then this will be the biggest achievement of my
life without a shadow of a doubt!
me achieve my target by donating generously on my charity page:
Many thanks for your help