Students saddle up for epic journey

ONE GROUP WHO CERTAINLY took inspiration from Mark Beaumont’s Health Week talk are the three students from Glasgow who are going to embark on a ‘Cycle to Sahara’, a challenging cycle from Glasgow to the Sahara Desert, in aid of charity. The students, Donnie Moonie, 4th year Pharmacology, Chris Millar, 3rd year Psychology and Charlotte Slaymark 3rd year Environmental Chemist, along with Matty Owen, a 2nd year Physiotherapist at St. Georges in London. They are teaming together for 10 weeks to have a bike ride like no other.

Planning is very much underway and the chance to meet with Mark Beaumont during Health & Wellbeing week was a dream come true for the charity cyclists. They listened eagerly as Mark described in great detail his world record breaking cycle around the world and through the Americas. As Charlotte explained: “He emphasised the struggle of planning such an expedition and that really hit home for us” After hearing about their plans Mark explained to the group that: “Half the battle is getting sponsorship and getting yourself to the start line, I wasn’t a cyclist when I started this, and I still don’t think I’m that good”! Charlotte was thrilled to meet him and stated “He wished us all the best of luck and hoped we have a lot of fun. It was a great boost for us”.

The expedition will take them through England and into France, across the Pyrenees, into Spain and over to Morocco to be met by the Atlas Mountains. They will be faced with hot climates, unknown terrain and unfamiliar cultures, and like Mark they will also be experiencing sleeping in tiny tents as they plan on carrying equipment on board their bikes, so space is at a premium.

The team consists of members from a range of GUSA sports clubs, each bringing different skills to the team. Charlotte commented that “this summer we will be putting our sporting abilities and endurance to the test”.

They are aiming to raise £10,000 for ‘Right to Play’. The charity’s mission is “To improve the lives of children in some of the most disadvantaged areas of the world by using the power of sport and play for development, health and peace.” Charlotte feels strongly about the role sport can play in charity and states “We feel as we have all been given ample opportunities to develop our sporting abilities through our childhoods and at University we want to give to those that haven’t. Our target will not be achievable without help of course”.

More information can be found on their Facebook community page ‘Cycle to Sahara’, or through emailing [email protected]. Donations can be made at

The team is currently in the planning stages and is always looking for sponsors to help with bike and camping equipment, so if you have any information get in touch with the Team, they would be grateful for any support from the student body and staff.


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