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Hit-and-run crash amputee Shaun Whiter sets off on 150-mile Tour of Suffolk cycle ride

PUBLISHED: 13:00 14 May 2017 | UPDATED: 13:14 14 May 2017

Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road, including Shaun Whiter, front. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road, including Shaun Whiter, front. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

Imajim Photography

A Suffolk footballer left for dead by a hit and run driver is pushing himself to mental and physical limits by taking on his “biggest challenge yet” – an 150-mile bike ride.

More than 100 people took part in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride which set off from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY More than 100 people took part in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride which set off from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

Shaun Whiter, who was forced to have both legs amputated when Haverhill driver Jan Adamec careered into him and his friend Joey Abbs in July last year, set off on the Tour of Suffolk from Portman Road stadium in Ipswich this morning.

Adamec, jailed for dangerous driving in September, slammed Shaun’s BMW into Joey while the pair were trying to fix a puncture at the side of the road in Newmarket.

More than 100 people took part in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride which set off from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY More than 100 people took part in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride which set off from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

The force of the crash was so great it trapped Joey between his own car and Shaun’s.

But Adamec, formerly of Shetland Road, Haverhill, drove off without stopping leaving the pair for dead.

Some of the participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride which set off from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY Some of the participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride which set off from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

Despite enduring a year of challenges, estate agent Shaun said the Tour of Suffolk – which he hopes to complete alongside around 100 cyclists – is his biggest yet.

Speaking ahead of the race, which will see participants cycle from Portman Road to Potter’s Resort in Hopton today, Shaun said: “It’s amazing to be here.

Shaun Whiter before he set off for the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY Shaun Whiter before he set off for the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride from Portman Road on Sunday. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

“This is a fantastic chance for me to give back to Ipswich Town (football club), who have supported me through everything that has happened over the last year.

“I’m also doing this to thank and raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance who helped to save my life after the crash.

Simon Milton is pulled through the Tour of Suffolk crowds by fellow ITFC legend Terry Butcher after rupturing his achilles in a charity football match two weeks ago. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY Simon Milton is pulled through the Tour of Suffolk crowds by fellow ITFC legend Terry Butcher after rupturing his achilles in a charity football match two weeks ago. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

“Although it’s been an extremely challenging year this is probably my biggest challenge yet it’s 150 miles but I hope it goes alright, I’ve got everyone here to support me.

“I can’t wait to get going and the atmosphere here is great.”

Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

Former Town players Russell Osman, Titus Bramble, Mick Stockwell and Alan Lee are also taking part in the tour.

Participants started the route at Portman Road yesterday morning before riding up to Potter’s Resort where they will stay overnight.

Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

They will return to the club via Southwold and Woodbridge at 4pm tomorrow.

The race was launched by Simon Milton, the football club’s director of academy sales, who is unable to take part this year because he ruptured his Achilles.

Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY Participants in the ITFC Tour of Suffolk cycle ride before leaving Portman Road. Picture: JAMES HAZELL/IMAJIM PHOTOGRAPHY

National charity Prostate Cancer UK and the Friends of Ipswich Town are also set to benefit from the tour.

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SPOILER ALERT: Did Ipswich man James Scharmann whisk a date off to the isle of Fernando’s? Find out here.

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