On September 12th, SJ Cycling hosted its third flagship Ali Asghar Water Appeal (AAWA) Sportive, attracting more than 130 riders. Starting and finishing at the heart of Stanmore, our Hujjat Centre, the fully supported 63 mile (100K) loop passed some stunning landmarks through London including Hampton Court Palace and Buckingham Palace.
The British Cycling accredited event welcomed its Regional Events Officer Mark Doel witnessing participation of riders from across the UK – Birmingham, Milton Keynes, Peterborough, Leicester and London.
With the scene set by SJ’s backbone volunteers, the atmosphere was blessed with Ziyarat-e Ashura by Dr. Imran Razai. The congregation was then addressed with Dr. Gulammehdi Sumar’s (Head of WF AID) motivational speech, before flagging off the first cluster at 6.30am followed by subsequent groups at ~3 minute intervals.
Amongst the riders, we were most impressed with our Under-16 riders who managed to complete the entire 63-mile route effortlessly and with camaraderie that would make any organisation proud. This remarkable achievement was accompanied by an equally noteworthy fundraising drive, raising £7,000 towards the total campaign and bringing awareness to the basic human requirement for clean water. Their achievement gives us great confidence in the future of cycling within our community.
A total of 130+ riders cycled a magnanimous 8,190 miles and climbed 286,000 feet of elevation collectively. Putting this into perspective, the total distance ridden is equivalent to riding from Najaf to Karbala a staggering 174 times, and the total elevation is equivalent to climbing Mount Everest a whopping 10 times!
Alhamdulillah, the club has witnessed yet another event wrapped in true SJ spirit, thanking our community and supporters throughout this journey for making this event a true success. We are truly humbled and blessed with your support throughout this campaign – sponsors, supporters, donors, riders and volunteers who have helped us throughout this journey.
Furthermore, the teamwork between SJ Cycling (Gents) and SJ Running (Ladies) has been truly outstanding, clearly illustrating the unity and collaboration within the club’s sports departments.
Our team is diligently going through the media content collated on the day and we will be publishing selected content (videos and photos) after ‘Arbaeen.
The campaign has currently raised £110,000 and the tap will be open until Arbaeen Day. Following this, we will communicate the final total amount and the selected project allocation.
Let us keep #cycling and #makingadifferencetogether by #givingthroughsport via our AAWA Justgiving Page > https://justgiving.com/campaign/sj-sportive-21 .