It’s always a bonus when you interview someone you really like but strange when you really like someone you’ve never met! Take Shane Prendergast – the man behind all the technical stuff at Beardrevered.com.
Shane and I have never met because he’s in the north and I’m down south. Shane and I have never spoken either, because Shane is deaf. With the wonders of the internet however, we have had the easiest working relationship imaginable. We are able to conduct our business easily and efficiently in fact I didn’t even know Shane was deaf until I read about it on his blog about a year ago – read Shane’s article here about how he manages his day-to-day life – it’s truly inspiring.
He turned my home-made blog into the website you see today and has kept it looking modern and totally rad for the past few years – I owe him A LOT.
Anyway gushing aside, he’s preparing a gruelling bicycle ride from San Francisco to New York for Ride for the Child and raising money for two fantastic charities. PLEASE PLEASE (pretty) PLEASE take the time to read his brilliant blog and sponsor him with whatever you are able to give.
Read on to find out what Shane had to say about his work, his project, oh and his beard! Yes, he has one of those too.
Tell us about yourself – who is Shane Prendergast?
I’m a twenty something year old, bearded web developer based in Macclesfield, UK. I like anything internet and design related, most sports and anything with cashew nuts in it.
What is Ride for the Child and how did this project come about?
On the 1st September 2016 I will cycle 3200 miles from SF to NY over a period of 28 days. Averaging 120 miles a day, I’ll cross 11 states and proceed through four time-zones. I am riding on my own but I’ll be tailed for the duration of the ride by a support team who will be stationed in an RV vehicle.
My father actually completed the same ride 20 years ago so he is the inspiration behind this epic challenge. I’m very proud of him and I hope I can follow in his footsteps.
Tell us about the charities you’re supporting and what they mean to you
I am actually deaf so I am supporting deaf children through Action on Hearing Loss (AOHL). I have experience firsthand on how difficult deafness is for young children. Action on hearing loss is a charity that all deaf children can depend on as they’re growing up.
Thankfully my mother has just recovered from breast cancer. The whole experience was so traumatic and I can’t even begin to imagine the pain, confusion and heartache young children – and their families – must experience during cancer. Through CLIC Sargent, I’m hoping I can directly make a difference to the lives of children and their families who are experiencing cancer.
How can we get involved?
I’m aiming to raise at least £10,000 so any donation – big or small – will assist me in achieving my goal, the Virgin money donation link can be found on the website.
In addition I also have many fundraising activities planned up until September so I am also actively looking for ways individuals, businesses or organisations could help me. If you have any ideas or suggestions then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
What will be your biggest obstacle/challenge along the grueling 3200 mile ride?
You see many people embarking upon huge challenges, but many of these folk are already super fit. I only started cycling on the 1st September (one year before the ride), so the challenge for me personally is a very big one. In addition, the heat and altitude will be two very difficult obstacles that I won’t have had much exposure to until I land on America soil.
Tell us more about the training process
As I mentioned above I started training on the 1st September. As I had no experience of training for an event like this I got myself a cycle coach. I train 5 times a week, and although I have a long way to go, I am beginning to see some improvements. You can read a blog post and watch some of my training sessions here: http://rideforthechild.co.uk/news/training/
Talking of ‘training’, how will you be caring for your beard during the ride? Any ‘must-have products’ in your bicycle pouch?
I have always had a beard, but I must admit I haven’t cared for it as much as I should have. Since I started cycling and am more exposed to the elements I noticed it became very dry and ragged. I have since purchased some Men Rock products and I have to say the condition of my beard has improved massively. I wash it with the beard soap and then apply some ‘beard balm’ after and it feels – and looks – lovely after!
How long have you been a facial hair enthusiast?
I have had a consistent beard for around a decade. It wasn’t until my late teens that I was able to grow non-patchy facial hair and since then I haven’t looked back! I don’t think I have ever owned a razor, instead I choose to trim with clippers every few months. Over the years my trademark long hair and beard has become commonplace amongst my family and friends.
Since beards and ink often go hand in hand, tell us about your tattoos. When did you get your first?
Like beards, I got my tattoos long before a sleeve was trendy. My first tattoo was a few Chinese symbols when I was 16/17 and now they have spread rapidly over my body. My favourite has to be the huge owl chest-piece I have, it was also the most painful. I recently said that I have retired from tattoos but I’m feeling that all too familiar urge to go under the needle again, perhaps something related to the ride!
Finally, who is your bearded hero and why?
The first bearded person that I really admired was Ricki Hall. He always looked really rugged and cool and I remember purchasing some T-shirts from a clothing company he collaborated with. However it has to be said that as a lifelong football fan Andrea Pirlo is one very cool and classy bearded man!
Follow Shane’s progress and all the latest news on social via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram
For everything else visit rideforthechild.co.uk
Ride for the Child – Shane Prendergast from Dave Croucher on Vimeo.