Procurement masochists cycle over the Alps

In less than a week’s time, an intrepid team of cyclists –plus a highly skilled and dedicated support team – will set off on an epic cycle ride across the Alps from Munich to Venice. They are taking the Via Claudia Augusta, the old roman road across the Alps.

This was the idea of Guy Allen, who many of you will know as the ex CPO of Abbey National, Santander and  Fujitsu, and is now my collaborator on the Real World Sourcing workshops (with BravoSolution, who are kindly supporting this cycling venture too).

He almost persuaded me to join the group, but ultimately a lack of a decent bicycle, the requisite level of cycling experience, the time, fitness or courage all conspired to make me say “sorry, I’ve got a bad leg. Or back. Or.. something”. But I have great admiration for the 13 brave souls. As well as Guy, several of the group are procurement professionals (Rob Lees, Nick Bacon, Adrian Turner), and they set off on Tuesday the 10th September to cover 322 miles in five days, including over 30,000 feet of  vertical climbs – equivalent to more than cycling up Everest!


The group is supporting two very worthwhile charities.  ACE Africa works in rural communities in Kenya and Tanzania giving training and support for caring for orphans and vulnerable children, their guardians or single parents and others infected or affected by HIV/AIDS. And Naomi House and jacksplace, provides support to children and young people with life-limiting conditions from across central southern England.

Why not make a donation here on their JustGiving page? (Use either of the “Sarah Clarke” links). As an incentive, we’ll have a special report here on the expedition during the week commencing September 16th. And we will give a thank you, a mention and a link to your website (good for the old SEO) to any firm who donates at least £100 to the cause. (Drop me an email at psmith(at) or comment here to let me know).

You can also follow their blog here. Good luck to everyone!

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Voices (2)

  1. David Atkinson:


    Despayre ye not. I can lend you a bike.

    1. Guy Allen:

      Believe me I offered. In fact Peter came round and tried out 3 of mine, still couldn’t persuade him!

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