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MAN RIDE 2017.

Day One. Sunny. With a chance of the apocalyptic. Today was biblical. Jason Roberts described it as "momentous. At times tear-jerking", so we turned to him for his view on the epic drama that unfolded.

By way of background, Jason Roberts is a renowned chef and global TV personality. He's familiar with a high-pressure environment and has seen all too closely the negative effects the hospitality industry has on had on his friends and peers.

"The anti-social hours have a massive impact,"

Says Jason, "Relationships are nigh on impossible to hold down. People come and go. So, too, do jobs. Continually striving to be the best in the kitchen or better your menu is often an unobtainable goal."

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"Substance abuse is high. And it often leads to addiction – drugs, drink, even coffee," continues the father of two. "It's an unsustainable life and I've seen two of my close friends succumb to the dangers of the lifestyle and depression."

"No one is going to confess their deepest, often darkest thoughts, with a single question. But have a conversation and it creates a bond that may allow someone the safety to be honest. To share."

"It's the impetus for me wanting to do this ride, and it's the incentive for me wanting to start a conversation rather than simply ask if someone's 'OK'. No one is going to confess their deepest, often darkest thoughts, with a single question. But have a conversation and it creates a bond that may allow someone the safety to be honest. To share."

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That very fact was poignantly demonstrated when Jason engaged Sharon from Hooton's Homegrown Farm Shop in friendly banter. What started off as a simple back and forth about body art, Jason has more tatts than most Premiership footballers, ended with Sharon's confession that her son disappeared in 2010 after a long battle of with mental health issues.

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It happened only 40k into Day One of The Man Ride UK, and already we were justified in our decision to come here to start this conversation. Goosebumps were felt by everyone in earshot. The fact she had earlier passed us after courteously trailing the bunch for some time, only served to add to gravitas to this momentous occasion.
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Some of our riders from today have mustered little over 100km in a single sitting. Yet all of them finished. In what was hands down the hardest and harshest conditions any of us would have experienced. We all have own stories. This was Jason's. But every last one of us was inspired by Sharon. We are glad to have given her a voice. And perhaps some comfort.
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MEET THE PEOPLE AND FOLLOW THE JOURNEY OF THE MAN RIDE UK EVERYDAY IN THE LEAD UP TO THE MAN RIDE DAY ON OCTOBER 1. THE CHAOS COLLECTION IS A SPECIAL RELEASE IN CONJUCTION WITH THE MAN RIDE. ALL PROCEEDS GO TO MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS AND THE PROMOTION OF THE MAN RIDE. PREVIEW RELEASE AVAILABLE AT THE MAN RIDE DAY ON OCT 1. STRICTLY LIMITED ONLINE RELEASE OCT 4.

 

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