Youngest Ever Solo Bike Ride Across Africa began this week supported by the new Explorers Against Extinction Young Explorer ProgrammePublished: 6th March 2019

A 19 year old from Norfolk began his epic challenge this week on Wednesday, March 6, to raise £10,000 for two charities. The challenge is to cycle across eight countries, battling rough terrain, loneliness, physical endurance and wild animals to reach South Africa’s Cape of Good Hope sometime in July.

Should he succeed, he will become the youngest person ever to cycle such a distance unsupported in Africa.

Jack O'Shea said: “I have always had a love for adventurous sports and travelling and after reading Mark Beaumont’s books I had a desire to get on my bike. I decided that I would raise money for two charities, Kitale School and Explorers against Extinction, to try and make a difference to the continent that will be hosting me on this adventure.”

He started his journey this week at Kenya’s Ol Pejeta Conservancy, which is the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa and home to two of the world’s last remaining northern white rhino. Mr O’Shea stayed at the sanctuary for two nights to assemble his bike and equipment. During that time he was able to visit the anti-poaching dog unit and the northern white rhinos and see just where the money raised in past campaigns has been spent. Explorers against Extinction donated a specially trained dog to Ol Pejeta’s anti-poaching canine unit using funds from its 2017 campaign.

Sara White, trustee of Explorers against Extinction, said: “We are delighted to support Jack through our new Young Explorer Programme."

“This is a new initiative which aims to offer mentoring and practical advice to young people passionate about exploration and conservation. I’m sure that having this sort of hands-on behind-the-scenes conservation experience will be a big motivational boost for Jack. We are very grateful to Ol Pejeta for giving him such an immersive experience - what an amazing start to this epic journey.”

Once Mr O’Shea completes his challenge he will fly home to begin studying paramedic science in London.

We wish him a huge amount of luck for this incredible and worthwhile challenge. If you want to help and sponsor his journey you can visit: www.uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JackOShea

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