Rider Firm staff member Jay Sharp is well known within the company as our resident gravel ride leader.
He runs Flarebar Thursdays, a weekly meetup throughout the summer where we head out after work to explore the local lanes and bridleways around our Sussex HQ. It’s a relaxed social ride that often ends with a cold beer and a bowl of chips at a country pub, but Jay is no stranger to a long ride, commuting over the Southdowns' by bike every day, rain or shine.
Despite an accident on black ice forcing him off the bike for 12 weeks earlier this year, he’s been back riding and this summer he will be putting those miles in the saddle to good use. Jay’s lining up at his first ever Ultra, the fourth edition of Pan Celtic Race.
This years event is 1415 miles (2293km) and for the first time ever starts over the Channel in France. On the morning of the 2nd of July, riders will leave St Malo for a loop around Brittany before heading up the Normandy coastline for a ferry across to the UK from Ouistreham. From there riders head up through the South of England and into Wales, riding the length of the country to the finish line in Llandudno.
We catch up with Jay to hear about his prep and how he feels about entering his first ever Ultra-race.