Pals pedal power helps out charityWednesday, April 04, 2012 Carmarthen JournalTWO Pendine cyclists have raised £8,000 for a childrens centre after an epic 1,000-mile ride throughAmericas industrial heartland.Cyclists Andy Edwards and Phil Jenkins, known locally as the Two Fat Cyclists, covered 1,000 milesin just six days from Chicago to New York, raising funds for the Canolfan Plant Sir Gâr childrenscentre charity._They were joined on the trip, in which they rode in relays, by drivers Lyndon Williams and GethinJones. To add to the challenge, they played at acoustic music gigs at various venues en route, evenmeeting Welsh opera singer Bryn Terfel at the rides end. Andy said: "Everything went really well,better than expected. We were there 12 days all together, with six days of cycling."A lot of people told me we were crazy going over there in March when you can have a foot of snow,but spring had come early. "There were no real problems on the ride, except the headwinds and therain, but at least it was warm rain." They had planned to ride 1,200 miles, but didnt quite make it thatfar. "Between the two of us we planned to cycle 1,200 miles. We didnt quite get to 1,200 as we gotlost in the South Side of Chicago," said Andy."Another day we got stopped by police, and that wasted an hour. Gethin was swaying about a bit andthey had to check everything; they were really friendly but it wasted time. "A couple of the days wedid 70 rather than the 100 miles we planned, but we did well over 1,000 miles between the two of us."
"Nothing went really wrong, its great that everybodys safe and everybodys home." This is not the firsttime the Two Fat Cyclists have tackled a ride in the States for charity. Back in 2009 they took part inan even more impressive trip, battling 3,000 miles across the US in aid of the Ty Hafan childrenshospice. Andy got within 200 miles of the end of the ride, only to crash his bike in torrential rain onthe last day of the adventure.He admitted the previous crash led to a cautious approach. "After it was dark we said we wouldntcycle, we were not taking any chances this time," Andy said. He said the support from music fans hadalso been welcome. "We played five gigs and raised $940 (£587) just by putting a hat out. The last gigat The Longbow in Brooklyn was the day after St Patricks Day, there were only 12 people there in thebar at its height but they put $248 in the hat, thats the sort of welcome we had."The boys also enjoyed Waless Grand Slam rugby victory during their trip, meeting some well-knownWelshmen. "We went to the Red Lion in Manhattan and met up with Welsh expats. We were therewith Bryn Terfel and Matthew Rhys the actor; we sang with Bryn at 8.30 in the morning." The cyclistshad planned to raise £12,000, but feel they have raised as much money as they can."At the moment weve raised in excess of £7,000 for the charity, Im hoping with a few more things toget it up to £8,000," said Andy, adding: "Were having a rest now."