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Father ready to cycle and run in Wolverhampton Half Marathon events in memory of teenage son

By Annabal Bagdi | Wolverhampton | News | Published:

A father is to brave gruelling back-to-back sporting challenges in a fitting tribute to his late teenage son.

Steve Guy and Hugh Porter

Steve Guy will jump on his bike to pedal across Wolverhampton before pounding the pavements in memory of 16-year-old Joe.

It comes a year after Willenhall rising star Joe suffered head and chest injures in a fatal smash with a lorry.

Lorry driver Mr Guy said: "When Joe was born, I was a runner at the time. He was a cyclist when he died. I thought I'll do a bit of the both.

"Last year I couldn't even ride a bike because of what happened to Joe. I feel so much happier knowing that I can do this."

Mr Guy will join this year's Carver Wolverhampton Half Marathon Events, tackling the Cousins 20k cycle ride at 9.30am before bracing himself for the Banks's 10k run just 45 minutes later.

He will join thousands of others as they set off from West Park before cycling, running and walking across the city on September 2.

It will be the second time Mr Guy has pledged to take part in a sporting challenge in memory of his son, who was a member of Wolverhampton Wheelers.

Last year, he made a last-minute decision to battle the 20k bike - won by Joe aged 14 - just three months after his son died.

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The 57-year-old said: "The preparation is going well. The biggest challenge is, I have a 45 minute window. I've gotta be back in 39 minutes to get changed into my running shoes and get to the start line so that's put a bit of extra pressure.

"Joe lived for bikes. He was amazing. We were going through some of his stuff at home the other day, because his bedroom is virtually the same as when he died, and we were going through some of his school books and when you turned the pages over it was bikes>"

Keen sportsman Joe was training to become a professional time trial rider when he died in Vicarage Road, Four Ashes, on May 31 last year.

An inquest into the death of the Our Lady and St Chad Catholic Academy student concluded it was an accident.

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Cycling legend Hugh Porter cycled alongside Mr Guy as he took part in last year's event in Joe's memory, and plans to cheer him on again this year.

The former pro said: "I think it's a wonderful idea. It's quite a challenge, so he's going to have to put his toe down.

"Last year we both rode round together in memory of Joe but obviously this year he'll be going a lot quicker. I'll be riding the event as well and then I'm going to be on the line after cheering him on."

Fundraisers are being called on to join the Carver Half Marathon, Banks’s 10k Run, Cousins 20k Cycle, Callprint Walk in the Park and Childrens Mini Marathon to gather cash for Compton Hospice, Give Us A Break Wolverhampton, and Wolverhampton and Bilston Athletics Club.

Porter, who is a loyal supporter of the fundraising event, started cycling aged 11 and still gets on his bike three times a week.

He added: "It's one of the jewels in the crown for the city. It's a day when people can come together, there's a carnival atmosphere in the park, there's lots going on for children and there's lots of different events.

"It's a great chance for everybody to come into the park and it actually showcases the camaraderie of the community as they all come together.

"Friendships made on a day like this, they last forever, sporting friendships.

"The beauty of it is it's all for great charities so it's an opportunity for people to show their appreciation and raise money for worthy causes."

Postal entries for the events close on August 25.

Annabal Bagdi

By Annabal Bagdi
@AnnabalB_Star

Senior reporter based at head office in Wolverhampton.

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