The bacon has been brought home! The Farrell family, led by their cycling captain Nathaniel ‘Tan’ Farrell, arrived in their hometown of Warrington on Wednesday after completing the final leg of their 1,500 km cycling tour of Europe, branded ‘Bringing Home the Bacon’.
The team’s initial motivation was to raise £10,000 (93,700kr) for a British charity fighting epilepsy as a way of honouring the memory of Felicity ‘Fliss’ Farrell, Tan’s younger sister who died of an epileptic seizure aged just 15 in 2008.
But the distance was not the only challenge the family faced. A major concern ahead of the tour had been how they would be able to bear with each other for two weeks, non-stop?
“We have all become a bit closer,” revealed Sebastian Farrell, Tan’s younger brother. “Of course there have been days when we’ve had problems and arguments, but all in all, we have bonded through this experience.”
The entire family took an active part in the adventure. Tan’s father Kevin, his girlfriend Regitze and Sebastian all cycled along, covering several hundred miles to support their leader. They also formed a resilient support crew, along with Tan’s youngest brother Alex, and Kevin’s girlfriend Marion, guiding Tan through unknown, foreign roads; helping him with repairs; and feeding and encouraging him along the way.
This tale is also one of a man’s resilience and colossal effort. Tan Farrell cycled over 1,500 km, riding through no less than six countries. He suffered the scorching heat in Denmark and Germany, pulled through the relentless winds in Holland and Belgium, survived the crowded seaside cycling paths in northern France, and overcame the cycling-unfriendly roads and steep climbs of the English countryside.
He impressed his entire family, whose pride grew stronger with each turn of Tan’s pedals. Sebastian, the main writer of the group’s blog, went as far as to promise he would take “a course in English literature” to convey his admiration for his older brother.
As their adventure draws to a close, the group can contemplate the scale of their success. Their appeal for donations was effective: they managed to raise over £6,000(56,000kr) and are expecting further contributions in their hometown. This will surely help them fulfil their wish to make sure no family has to experience what they went through when Felicity passed away.
Now, the exhausted and homesick Team Farrell can enjoy some hard-fought rest and celebrate their reunion with friends and family. There’s no doubt that in the coming days they, along with the rest of Britain, will join in celebrating the Olympic spirit of which, one can argue, they have been the modest but tireless bearers throughout their journey.