WEST VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – While warnings have been out advising people against too much outdoor activity due to wildfire smoke, Donovan Tildesley has been training to cycle 12 kilometres up Cypress Mountain.
The Paralympian has had a meaningful motivation to propel him towards Sunday morning’s summit; he’ll be pedaling for his dad.
Tildesley, who is blind, is joining other riders to raise money for pancreatic cancer research.
The 10th annual Glotman-Simpson Cypress Challenge is dedicated to the memory of Tildesley’s father, and long-time coach, Dr Hugh Tildesley.
“One of the legacies he left me with was sport. He coached me to four Paralympic Games as a swimmer so I thought this is something he’d be very proud of me for doing.”
Tildesley says he’s not too worried about the smoke that’s blanketed Metro Vancouver for the past few weeks, as rain in the forecast is expected to help clear the haze.
“I’m a pretty fit guy so it’s easy to stay with it but getting to the top is one thing, I’ve got to tell you, coming down, especially last year, it took me about 27 minutes. That’s quite a ride when you’re actually going downhill at the end of the race.”
Dr Tildesley passed away in 2016 after an 11-month battle with the disease.
Donovan has set a personal goal of raising $5,000.