Shad Supports the Charity Walkers

Despite the numerous horrors being witnessed across the world these days, there are plenty of awesome humans on this planet willing to put themselves through aches, cramps and blisters in the name of a good cause.  John’s son in law Scott along with a bunch of fresh eager souls are organising a sponsored walk along the shoreline from Bognor Regis to Brighton on 3rd June to raise money in support of people with cystic fibrosis.  People born with this debilitating condition have a build-up of sticky mucous in their lungs and digestive system which can lead to a whole bunch of problems including difficulty breathing, malnutrition, chest infections, diabetes and osteoporosis.  Although there is no cure, a range of treatments such as medications, staying active and airway clearance techniques can help control symptoms and reduce complications.

Just Giving – Walk for Susan

 

Scott and the rest of the gang have been practising walking to raise their fitness levels and eating healthily (most of the time anyway) in readiness for the big day.  Here they are playing around with balloons, banners and buckets all donated by the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.  The Trust supports those who live with cystic fibrosis, conducting research and campaigning to raise awareness and funds in order to improve outcomes for many people including some that are or have been close to several individuals in our gregarious group of fundraisers.  The walk is over 30 miles from pier to pier and there are plenty of cafes and benches along the way for the walkers to stop and refuel.  I would offer to accompany them but I don’t like getting sweaty so I’ll sponsor them a few quid and send them off with a smile!  I hope the weather stays good and everyone remembers their bottle of water and packet of plasters!

Just Giving – Walk for Susan

Shad heads to the race track

Nothing sets the human pulse racing like a competition and the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) is a fine example of such an event.  So when John was offered a trip to the iconic sporting venue Brands Hatch in Kent courtesy of Team Hard it was a no-brainer!  John did all the work this time under a shroud of grey skies while I stayed dry and warm on my blanket in the stands.  The moist air gives my fur a certain frizz that I don’t appreciate and as you know I don’t like getting my paws wet!  The drivers on the other hand had no qualms about the rain that was forming shimmering beads on their windscreens.  I thought the race might get cancelled but I guess it takes a lot more than water to stop these folks from testing their courage and skill behind the wheel of a Porsche Carrera.

 

Lights on, engines revving, lurching forwards desperate to charge (like me when John opens the fridge door), the horn sounds and we’re off.  The noise is tremendous as a pack of swarming super-cars launches itself on to the track and they’re bunched up so close I’m stunned that none of them collide.  Just an inch or two away from each, water sprays from their rear tyres and I imagine their steely faces grimacing at each other as they calculate their next moves, every ounce of energy focussed on getting ahead.  No wonder there’s an emergency helicopter and half a dozen ambulances strategically parked along the race-course.  Within seconds a few cars peel off from the main group and take the lead but one car spins off the tarmac to end up neatly parked on the grass and his hopes of winning are over.

 

Soon the heat from the tyres dries the track and the gap between the leaders and the group gets longer.  The commentator’s voice becomes higher in pitch as he reveals the positions of the cars and the strategies the driver employ.  Sometimes they swerve sideways to block the car behind them or drive right up against the car in front to take advantage of their slipstream before hitting the gas and pulling out to overtake.  Two of the Formula 4 cars come so close side by side that they get stuck together and the Marshalls have to wave the yellow flag to slow the race while the two cars are prised apart.  John was rooting for a young man called Jake Hill, the son of racing driver and motorsports commentator Simon Hill.  Born in 1994, Jake is a rising star in his field and was competing this day in the BTCC for Team Hard coming in a respectable second.  His dad gave him a big hug before he walked on to the podium for the first time in his life, but not the last I’m sure.  As the celebrations continued, John arrived back at the stands proudly wearing his Team Hard lanyard and paddock pass and we began the trek back across the field being used as a car park to find the car was stuck in the mud.  An hour later, a sweaty mud-splattered John flopped into the seat muttering something about sludge and people and cheesey chips.  I continued to preen my whiskers knowing that John and I had enjoyed a really good day and I’d probably be in for a hot chicken supper on the way home.