An engineer is gearing up for toughest challenge of his life as he prepares to take on one of the world’s hardest motorbike races.
Lyndon Poskitt, 34, of St Michael’s-on-Wyre, has re-mortgaged his house, got the backing of businesses and sought sponsorship to raise £70,000 to take part in the Dakar Rally across South America.
The race will be watched by more than one billion television viewers in 190 countries over two weeks, during which Lyndon will take on the deserts of Peru and the mountains in Argentina before ending in Santiago, the capital of Chile.
The engineer, who works at defence giant BAE Systems in Warton, near Preston, will travel of speeds of up to 100mph during the race, one of the five hardest in the world.
He said: “I want to do this when I am in my prime. I will probably still be paying it back when I am 50, but I would never be able to do it when I am that age.
“I do not want to look back then and say I wish I had tried – that is what it is all about for me.
“This type of long distance ride over all types of terrain is what makes me tick.”
The rider has already taken part in a number of international competitions in recent months, including one on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia, to prepare for the race.
He has previously crossed the Sahara Desert in northern Africa for “something to do” and is under no illusion of his chances of winning the Dakar Rally.
Lyndon said: “The teams I am up against have million-pound budgets and compete in this race every year, whereas I am doing this alongside a full-time job.
“I am under no illusion of my chances of winning –to complete the race would be enough for me.”
He has flown out to Peru with his girlfriend, Dani Pop, for the start of the race on Saturday (January 5) and she will stay out for the early spectator stages of the competition.
The engineer, who works on jets including the Eurofighter Typhoon for BAE, has even planned further “impossible” challenges to take on after Dakar.
Lyndon said: “There are events in places like Romania and Austria which are created so you cannot finish them. They are renowned for their difficulty levels.
“Dakar is considered one of the toughest rallies in the world and these others are probably above them.
“For me, it is all about the fun of competing and challenging myself, where I finish is not important, I just want to look back in 10 years and say I gave it a go.”
l You can follow Lyndon’s progress in the rally through his website www.lyndonposkittracing.com.