Newtongrange man to cycle to every distillery for whisky challenge
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Rob Richardson (36) is embarking on his Whisky Ventures Ride, starting on May 12 from the most southerly distillery in Scotland, Bladnoch, to the most northerly, Saxa Vord, via every operating single-malt distillery in the country. He hopes to finish up at the end of June.
He said: "I have done stuff in Canada, Scandinavia, Tanzania, but with lockdown I was starting to get itchy feet to do something big again.
"Over a couple of drams a while ago I thought about doing this. Having moved to Scotland 10 years ago I embraced that part of the culture here. Travelling all over Scotland for my job I thought it would be cool to cycle it.
"I thought, ‘why not cycle the length of Scotland’ and realised that there are distilleries near to the most northern and southern points. I realised that there are a few distilleries on the way between them, then noticed that if you go a bit off-track you can get more and more.
"So I thought I should therefore do my original plan and visit them all. I’m also including a gin distillery in Shetland because they plan to open a whisky distillery there. I would have short changed myself if I didn’t go there now.”
Speaking about the two charities he is supporting, Rob added: "As I work all over Scotland the pessimist in me feels like I might need the Scottish Air Ambulance Service at some point! And I have been involved in rescues in England so I know what an incredible service it is.
"And because I work in the Lothians I have seen the help that Cash for Kids has done for local children.
"With government cuts and the cost of living crisis they will be needed even more in the coming years so I wanted to help them. I hope to raise £10,000.”
Rob is also calling on locals to join him on his Midlothian leg on Sunday, May 15. He said: "One of my main sponsors is in Peebles, Cycle Law Scotland, they plan to send staff to join me at Tweedbank, as have some friends. I’m meeting them at the Reivers Distillery at 9.30am so other people can join me. We will cycle to East Lothian to visit a distillery, then back to Midlothian to finish that day at home.”
For more information and to donate, go to www.whiskyventures.co.uk.