Craig takes on the 100 mile challenge

Craig, a keen cyclist faced the challenge of a lifetime when he took part in the 2016 RideLondon 100 to raise funds for JIA-at-NRAS.

I took part in the challenge to raise money for NRAS, specifically for Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA). My long suffering wife gave me strict instructions that I could only take part if I raised money for something that really means something to us.

At the beginning of 2015 Craig and his wife’s world was rocked when their daughter Sophia, (then nearly 6) was diagnosed with JIA. To say they were shell shocked is an understatement …. they didn’t even know children could get arthritis. Then began the seemingly endless hospital appointments, steroid injection operations, medicine to control nausea, stress and worry. 18 months on and Sophia is doing really well thanks to the treatment she is receiving at the Evelina Children’s Hospital in London. Some days can still be difficult and, as there is currently no cure, who knows what the future holds. Craig said “to see your child who sometimes couldn’t get down the stairs, crying as she was in so much pain be able to cycle up a huge hill with me makes us very proud of our strong, courageous lovely girl”.

Craig’s aim was not just to raise money for NRAS but also to raise awareness of the charity and a condition that about 12,000 children across the UK live with. Surprisingly JIA is one of the commonest causes of physical disability in childhood yet many people are unaware children can get inflammatory arthritis.

Craig raised a fantasic £1440. He finished the 100 mile race in 4 hours and 39 minutes – a pretty impressive time!