The story of how, in 2010, David Walliams recruited a team of celebrities for a non-stop cycle relay between John O'Groats and Lands End.
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-Hello, is that my favourite comedy actress, Miranda Hart?
Yes! Is that my favourite comedy actor, David Walliams?
Basically, we're wanting to cycle from John O'Groats to Lands End.
-A team of people led by me.
-There's going to be seven of us.
So David Walliams, myself, Paddy Kielty here, Jimmy Carr,
Miranda Hart, Russell Howard and Davina McCall. What a motley crew!
I just want David to know that, even if I'm dying,
I will give it everything I have!
-I think it's over 1,000 miles.
-1,000 miles on a bike... Brilliant.
So are you available in March?
Oh, what am I letting myself...? The annoying thing is, I am.
It's better than your other idea of swimming up Kilimanjaro. I'm in.
# Well we know where we're going
# But we don't know where we've been... #
This is no ordinary bike ride.
David Walliams has persuaded six fellow celebrities
to cycle 1,000 miles in just four days.
# We're on a road to nowhere... #
It's a massive challenge.
David's hoping the British public will get behind them and help
raise at least £1 million for Sport Relief.
For the last three months, Olympian Greg White has been overseeing
the team's intensive training regime.
This is a really tough challenge.
We've got unfit celebrities, who've never ridden a racing bike before,
who are going to embark on a 1,000 mile trip
across the roughest terrain in the UK, in the middle of March
where we could be down to -5, -10 C,
with a wind chill that could be down to -15, in the snow.
It's so relaxing, this music.
Last minute thoughts? I want to go home, and this is a really bad idea.
-I'm really nervous.
-We just want to get going now, really.
-I'm covered in bruises.
I'm just nervous about being able to stay on the bike.
Ready? Three, two, one... go!
The challenge will require stamina, speed and motivation.
David's team has little in the way of qualifications.
Stand-up comedian, Russell Howard.
The furthest I've ever cycled before this is probably
four miles on my paper round when I was a kid, and I hated it.
TV presenter, Patrick Kielty.
-Very nice indeed.
Radio One DJ, Fearne Cotton.
-I'm really nervous.
Once again I've underestimated a Sport Relief challenge.
TV presenter, Davina McCall.
-Am I the oldest?
Come on! You youngies!
And comedienne, Miranda Hart.
Bit careful at the moment.
I can't believe I've done that! Did you know that was going to happen?
Oh, and Jimmy Carr.
Jimmy's on a national tour and can only join the ride for one day.
They may not seem like the fittest bunch,
but if they pull together they might have a chance.
This is more like it.
I like these bits.
Hello, my darlings!
It's got to be done.
For the first 12 miles, they cycle as a group.
But after that, they will do a non-stop relay at a sprint pace
to keep to David's ambitious target
of reaching Lands End within just four days.
We're cycling home.
It's an amazing way to see the country.
They clearly have no idea what lies ahead.
Are we still in Scotland?
For the next four days and three nights, their home will be a bus.
This is it.
That's all the room we've got!
It is slightly smaller than we'd anticipated.
A lot smaller. Miranda doesn't fit anywhere on this whole bus!
Each rider will have a cycling pacemaker. With their help,
David wants the team to maintain an average speed of 13mph,
so they can complete the distance in the four days.
It's a big ask, and getting tougher by the second.
Is this a snow storm or am I slightly over-milking it?
-This is a snow storm!
-OK, we're in a snow storm.
Just as everyone else gets to get off their bikes, snow hits us.
Lovely and cooling though,
on your face.
Back on the bus, reality sets in.
I was a bit freaked out by that
because we were only cycling for an hour. And...and it was flat.
And I actually found that quite hard. I did, yeah.
Very cold. The side wind was really tricky.
David's got another hour of that.
It'll be interesting to see what shape he's in after that.
And this is the easiest thing we're going to do today.
It just makes you think, what's up the road? That's worrying me now.
I fell off at the start when I was standing. Don't laugh, please.
Don't laugh at me. Um... It was slightly embarrassing.
Because it was embarrassing and a lovely crowd had gathered,
I felt like I couldn't go, "Actually that really hurts!"
So, yeah, quite disgusting...
I'm so glad that they have Sport Relief now, in March,
and not the summer(!)
This is not much fun.
David and his team are putting themselves through this
for one reason - to raise money for Sport Relief.
-Hello. Are we on air now?
Yeah, how long?
Two weeks earlier, David and Fearne were busy drumming up support.
-Look who it is - Mr David Walliams!
David, we're going to talk to someone on the phone,
-who is exceedingly rich and wants to help.
-On line one.
It's Peter Jones from Dragon's Den!
Peter, how are you going to help us?
'There's lots of businesses that should be behind you.
'You're travelling the length and breadth of the country,
'there's got to be a lot of people that will support us.
I'm very happy that you want to help and get us loads of money.
'Let's surpass your challenge of £1 million. Wouldn't that be great?'
-I think so.
-You could do it right now, Peter - write a cheque!
Dragon Peter Jones will spend the four days of the ride raising money,
whilst Fearne and the others try and keep up the pace.
The pacemaker with Fearne is pentathlete Richard Ball.
Fearne's finding the demanding schedule extremely difficult.
Another hill on the way, look.
So we're 23 miles into the whole challenge,
is that what you're saying? Yeah? That sounds puny.
Only 23 miles in, only about a thousand to go!
With just four hours of the ride completed,
the money's already started to come in.
When I spoke to Sara Cox on Radio 1,
they'd raised £40,000 since nine o'clock this morning.
-Which is really good.
Listen, not raising the rest of the money isn't an option.
Yeah. We just will.
The team will ride in strict rotation,
each doing around 26 miles in as close to two hours as possible.
Because she's having the big hills, our average speed has dropped
and she's gone over 2½ hours for what should have been 2.
-We've somewhere got to pick up half an hour.
-We're uphill all the way.
We are up a lot of hill, mate. So we've got some work to do.
It's Patrick's first outing. He's heading inland
and will be the first to tackle the treacherous Highlands.
-How you doing, you all right?
Fearne knows she needs to rest before her next ride at 11pm.
The team have chosen lightweight racing bikes for speed,
which simply aren't suited to icy conditions.
At least it was in the snow, that was good. On an isolated road.
And thankfully there's no camera on my bike to record it(!)
After eight hours in the coach, Russell takes up the baton
for the evening shift.
The team will cycle through the night.
CROWD SHOUTS ENCOURAGEMENT
Even friendly, it sounds terrifying in the Scottish accent! "GO ON!"
"Argh! All right, I'm trying! Don't hit me!"
He may not have been on a bike since he was a boy,
but unlike some of his team-mates, at least he's pretty fit.
-Nice to get out?
I've been going to the gym, running, playing football,
and trying to eat less chips and biscuits. That is about it, really.
The whole team was given rigorous fitness tests before they left.
But some of the riders have trained harder than others.
I'm now really confident in all the team, bar Jimmy Carr,
who I believe, to this point has done no training.
I think David's a horse.
Davina is super-fit. You know...
Army-type fitness person. She's going to be absolutely fine.
Fearne, I know, is really determined.
Paddy's mega-strong, like big-thighs strong.
Russell looks fit.
Jimmy - rubbish.
That's basically it.
I think training is basically cheating.
Jimmy Carr is on tour and is only able to join the team for one day.
But he's never far from their thoughts.
We trained a lot, didn't we, for two months?
That was really hard. Jimmy's just swanning in off the stage.
Miranda is dreading her night ride.
We've got 2,000 ft to climb on your little section.
On your BIG section. That's a long climb.
I think she's doing really well.
If she opted to do an extra hour, she must be just coasting along.
-I want to cry.
-Yeah, that's good. That means you're right on the edge.
Beautiful. That's what we like.
15 minutes from her handover to David, Miranda is forced to walk.
Ohh! It just hits me, a faintness.
-All of a sudden it sort of comes over you?
Miranda defied expectations
and kept going in the icy winds for an hour and 45 minutes.
You OK, Miranda?
No, not really.
It's brutal out there.
So just keep an eye on fingers and toes, yeah?
As David climbs, the temperature drops even further.
Miranda is just not having the best experience,
because she did two major mountains, which was really amazing.
But, you know, she's not been well and she has asthma.
She was really suffering.
On the bus, sleep is proving almost impossible.
But at least it's warm. As David prepares to hand over to Patrick...
Which bus is ours?
..the severity of the winter night is clear.
His hands have completely seized up.
Ohh, my fingers!
Follow the car?
As Patrick presses on into the heart of the Highlands,
the temperature plummets to minus 15.
It's harder than he ever imagined.
Get in, get some of that kit off straight away.
I feel like crying.
I actually feel like crying.
-Yeah. I feel just so empty.
3am, and even pacemaker Richard is forced to pull up
in serious risk of hypothermia.
Despite the crippling cold, Davina insists she'll cycle on alone.
I really am on my own now.
# One is the loneliest number that you'll ever do
# Two can be as bad as one
# It's the loneliest number since the number one... #
It's 340 miles into the ride and Fearne's keen to find out
how much they've raised.
Radio 1 listeners alone, since yesterday on the text,
-have done 97,000.
-In a day.
And the actual total is round about 270,000.
So we're over a quarter of a million. In a day!
That is just extraordinary.
Gathering crowds are a welcome support.
Hey, hey, hey!
-How old are you guys?
-Six years old? Have you got any idea who I am?
-Oh thank you, this is beautiful.
Is that for good luck? Is it?
England! Homeward bound.
After 36 hours of non-stop cycling,
the team has finally conquered Scotland. But there's no let-up.
They now face probably the toughest terrain in England -
the Lake District.
Kirkstone Pass is 1,500ft high
and one of the steepest and longest climbs in the UK.
You the man!
That is great work - really, really strong. Very impressive.
Keep driving down that pedal.
Great focus, great zone.
Keep up a little bit. Don't worry, don't worry.
It's not about how quick you go. Keep pushing, keep pushing.
OK. I'm OK.
-This is just another terrible night, isn't it?
I always think, if you're doing something for charity,
it's good if there's a bit of suffering involved.
I think you become a little bit closer to the people you're helping.
I can't compare what we've done.
We've had to work really hard,
but that's not comparable to living on the streets in Delhi.
In Delhi, as many as 100,000 children live on the streets.
Sport Relief helps to fund Butterflies,
who run street schools all over Delhi.
David met Rita Panika.
How many pupils do you have at your school?
On average there would be anywhere between 25 and 30.
Hello, how are you? Did you do this today? Oh, my word. That's very good.
It's amazing still how the children have a positive outlook.
It's amazing. I can't imagine that children living here
could think of the future, can say, "I want to get out of this,
" want to be a teacher, I want to be a policeman."
Another scheme run by the project is a children's bank.
Afsar keeps the money he earns safe in his account.
What has Afsar done with his money?
-He's bought a bicycle, which he rents out.
-Can I rent your bicycle?
For one hour, he takes 14 rupees.
I'm very well known in Britain.
I'm on television. Would he do a discount?
-10 rupees! Result!
'The more money we can raise, the more we can help kids like Afsar.'
RINGS BICYCLE BELL
He's a lot tougher than I was at 12 years old.
I'm going to think about him on those gruelling hills.
At last, the moment the team has been waiting for.
Jimmy Carr is about to be unleashed.
I'm not in a hurry to get on the bike!
Thanks for coming out!
While the ride continues at pace through Lancashire, David goes ahead
to pick up Jimmy from his hotel.
-How are you?
-I'm all right.
-You've got all your gear on! You're ready to go.
-I'll be fine!
Swimming the Channel is fine, you do it on your own.
Why did you have to get us involved?
Jimmy hasn't trained and has almost no experience riding a racing bike,
so David shows him the ropes.
-It's Jimmy Carr! From TV!
Thanks for coming out. Cheers!
-This guy's a big fan of yours.
-Hi! It's really me, hi!
Straight over, boys. Straight over.
This is hard. I've done eight miles so far,
which is officially the furthest I've ever cycled in my life!
# Hey, Jimmy, you're so fine You're so fine, you blow my mind
# Hey, Jimmy! Hey, Jimmy! #
Day three. 650 miles into the challenge.
Dragon Peter Jones has dropped in
to give news of how much he's helped them to raise.
This is amazing. It's going to shock you. You have reached,
-at one o'clock today, £627,000.
-Very, very good. That's fantastic.
Spurred on by the money they've raised so far, there's a real chance
that lost time can be won back over the Cheshire plains.
Next to take the baton,
Patrick Kielty, the team's strongest performer so far.
-How are you feeling?
Paddy flies, absolutely flies.
Every session I've been out with him, he's just been flying.
That makes a big difference.
We're catching up maybe 20 minutes every time he goes out.
-18 miles in an hour. Is that the fastest so far?
D'you know what, the horrible thing is,
I'm absolutely going to cane that now.
Am I in the lowest gear? It's killing me.
I'm going to walk a bit.
This is where training would have paid off.
Jimmy's in no danger of breaking Patrick's speed record.
But he keeps going and completes his share of the ride.
He's been on the bike for a long time.
There's a bit of a difference
between being on the bike for a while and having done a lot!
# Jimmy mack When are you coming back? Jimmy? #
Jimmy is by far the slowest member of the team.
Greg is concerned that they're falling behind schedule.
It would be advantageous for the average speed
to exchange Jimmy for a cyclist as soon as possible.
D'you know what this is?
-It's a privilege.
-I'm glad you see it as that.
Russell Howard steps in, and not a moment too soon.
I think we're behind time a little bit overall,
but that's the price you pay when you get me to help.
As the riders start their final night ride,
they know they'll have to push up their average speed
to make up the lost time.
They'll pass through five counties, with a whistle-stop visit to Wales.
Wales! This is great. And we're back in...
First light in Devon marks the final day.
870 miles cycled and 130 still to go.
The end may be in sight, but Miranda has a plan.
We're at Tiverton Parkway and I'm going to get a ticket to Lands End.
But Greg's not one for shortcuts.
Come on! Drive it down! Drive it down, Miranda.
Not far to go, not far to go. You're almost at the top.
You've got about 30 metres to go.
Greg has motivated Miranda throughout the ride.
Of all members of the team, she knows how important support can be.
That's a big climb, let me tell you.
You'd never, ever have got up that before. You keep surprising me.
'The Sport Relief £1 million Bike Ride.'
-CHRIS MOYLES: 'Good morning, Davina McCall.
'Davina, we needed a big push this morning. We wanted to try and hit
-'quarter of a million from Radio 1's side of things.
'So it went from 213,000, with a big push,
'Radio 1 has now raised for you...
'Which means, Davina McCall, that your overall total
'for the bike ride is...
At last, the home straight. To meet their target time,
the team will have to go faster than they've ever gone before.
Give us a lift.
Today, they'll have to climb almost 22,000 feet.
That's more than on any other day of the ride so far.
There are some pretty steep descents too.
I had Richard next to me on the bicycle,
and he was going, "Don't put your brakes on!"
Ready? Let go! Let go! Go! Go! Go!
I went down this hill
and I swear we must have been going about 35 miles an hour.
In the end, I just had to scream.
It was like being a kid.
There was an old man - this was one of the coolest moments -
who had a flat cap. He just lifted it off and went, "We're very proud."
That just felt like a really cool moment.
There's something quite dignified about an old man going,
"I will get out of my house and tip my cap at a young man doing his bit."
Throughout the 1,000 mile journey,
Patrick has consistently kept the highest average speed.
And today is no exception.
45 miles an hour downhill.
He now holds the course record.
As well as going one hour 17 for 23 miles. This is where it counts,
so this boy is putting it in. Incredible.
I'm really thrilled that we've managed to raise so much money,
because that's what it's all about.
We'd not be doing this if it wasn't going to raise money and help people.
So, yes, I'm really, really chuffed.
# Sometimes I feel like throwing my hands up in the air
# I know I can count on you
# Sometimes I feel like saying... #
They started together,
and they'll complete the last eight miles as a team.
This is quite moving, seeing all the yellow jackets in front of us,
the whole team coming in together.
Thank you! Thank you!
Thank you, farmers!
This is just fun now. All fun. The sunset is amazing,
it's just a perfect evening.
Between them, they've ridden the length of Britain non-stop.
They've burned over 120,000 calories...
and climbed the equivalent of Mount Everest twice over.
All with hardly any sleep.
Who's going to win this race?
And they've captured the hearts of the nation.
# You've got the love... #
I'm not crying, I don't know what you're talking about! Dawn!
It's a remarkable achievement.
What they don't know is whether they've hit their ambitious £1 million target.
David whatever your name is, Peter and I have been asked
to give you this piece of paper which contains the total.
You got to that total half an hour ago.
-Oh my word!
-Go on, tell us!
The total is £517!
No, it's £1,006,509.
David Walliams recruits Miranda Hart, Davina McCall, Jimmy Carr, Russell Howard, Patrick Kielty and Fearne Cotton to attempt a non-stop cycle relay between John O'Groats and Lands End, for Sport Relief. The gruelling four-day challenge involves cycling almost 1,000 miles through day and night, during the coldest winter for thirty years.