Our 7,000 mile cycling hero rewarded with team success
Monday 15th May 2017
Our cycling superstar Stephen Kingdom has expressed joy and relief that his beloved Crystal Palace are staying in the Premier League after cycling 7,000 miles to games this season as part of his epic Cycling the Season challenge.
Stephen, a dad of two from South London, is cycling to and from every Eagles game this season to raise money for families with disabled children.
47-year-old Stephen will have clocked up 7,100 miles and spent an incredible 550 hours in the saddle by the time the final whistle of the season is blown for Crystal Palace at their last away game on 21 May at Manchester Utd.
He said: "Now I'll be able to enjoy the last cycle to Manchester. I'm not sure I could have done it feeling as nervous as I did yesterday, Sunday 14 May.
"Manager Sam Allardyce told the players they'd have me to answer to if we weren't safe before the last game of the season, and look what happened. The sun shone, we won 4-0, we're staying up and I shook hands with Wilfried Zaha - it was a good day."
Commenting on his phenomenal challenge he added: "It has been incredibly exciting cycling all around the country following Crystal Palace.
"It's been really hard at times, with long days in the saddle battling headwinds, cold weather, rain and even hail. But it's been a unique way to see the beauty of the English (and Welsh) countryside. And when the going has got tough, I've been sustained by the support I've received from other football fans and the knowledge that I am raising money for such an important cause."
Stephen kicked off his cycle challenge last August and has been pedalling to and from every one of the 38 Eagles matches this Premier League season ever since.
Support he's had along the way means he's smashed his £10k target for our vital advice and support services. As a result he has had to increase his fundraising target to £15,000.
One in 20 children in the UK are born with a disability, and year on year more families with disabled children come to us for information, support and advice they find difficult to find anywhere else. Every penny Stephen raises through his amazing challenge will help us reach even more families who need the charity's help.
If you'd like to sponsor Stephen's cycle challenge, text CPFC16 £3 to 70070 or visit his just giving page.
You can listen to Stephen talk to BBC Radio 5 Live about his challenge (from 1 hour 21 mins).