Ironman Andy hoping to be a charity champ

IRONMAN: Andrew Forrester hope's to complete the challenge in under 16 hours

IRONMAN: Andrew Forrester hope's to complete the challenge in under 16 hours

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A THORNTON cyclist who last year rode the opening stage of the Tour of Britain is planning to join forces with cycling legend Lance Armstrong reports, NEIL HENDERSON.

Andrew Forrester has been given a dream opportunity to ride alongside the seven-time Tour De France winner in the forthcoming Ironman Triathlon in June.

He’s set to fly to Nice in France to join up with the 20-strong LIVESTRONG cancer charity team, set up by Armstrong.

The sporting legend famously overcame testicular cancer in 1996 and went on to win seven consecutive Tour De France victories between 1999 and 2005.

Andrew is now training hard ahead of the Ironman Triathlon which comprises a gruelling 2.4 Mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and a full 26.2 mile marathon run - a total of 140.6 miles to be completed in a total time under 16 hours.

The 43-year-old explained how it all came about: “I follow lance on Twitter and he put a request out for people to come and apply for the event, so I did and was successful, which was great but daunting because I’ve since been training non stop.

“I’m a keen cyclist anyway and come from a military background but have had to go back to basics and virtually learn how to swim freestyle all over again.

“I’m currently half way through the ‘13 weeks to 13 hours’ triathlon programme which is incredibly hard work but also very enjoyable and is tailored to fit in around your working life which helps.”

Andrew has had particular help from Fife Sports and Leisure Trust who have given him free access to a host of facilities around the Kingdom and has also singled out the support of the Glenrothes Triathlon Club.

He said: “They have been a great support and will help me in my final preparations as I complete the Long Course Event in Wales just two weeks before I get out to Nice, I hope to become the first Ironman member of the Glenrothes club when I get back.”

“It’s a bit of a busman’s holiday but also a once in a lifetime opportunity to compete with around two thousand other athletes.”

You can donate by going to http://laf.livestrong.org/goto/forrester666