Staff from Highland firm JBT are a driving force in haulage as they deliver goods across the country in their fleet of HGVs. But they are leaving behind the comforts of their cabs and switching to another mode of transport as they saddle up for the challenge of Etape Loch Ness.
A 12-strong team from JBT will take part in the epic 66-mile cycle around the iconic loch later this month, and will be among one of the biggest contingents on the course. The company is a long-term partner of the popular sportive and staff from the Inverness depot feel a real affinity for the event.
JBT provides logistics services to Etape Loch Ness – as well as its sister event the Baxters Loch Ness Marathon and Festival of Running – providing key logistical support in the build up to and during the event.
Director Robert Gordon says there is never a shortage of staff – as well as family members – asking if they can join Team JBT. He says, “We became a partner to Etape Loch Ness in the first year it was staged. A couple of our staff took part, and it has grown every year since then.
“We all have our JBT cycle shirts and there is a great team spirit. I think that being involved has been good for staff morale, even though there might be some friendly competitiveness on the day of the event.
“I think because we are a partner – as well as doing the logistics we donate items to the goody bags like puncture repair kits – the whole team wants to see the event do well and succeed.
“It really is a dream event for cyclists. You get to ride an iconic route without any other traffic on the road and for us, when that is in our own back yard, there is a real feel-good factor about it.”
JBT staff first caught the cycling bug in 2012 when Robert and fellow directors Michael Beveridge and Ian Wilson took part in a mammoth cycle from Land’s End to John O Groats. Their enthusiasm for the sport has been infectious, with more and more staff getting on their bikes.
Team JBT will be led out by Michael and Ian and many staff will be adding their support as spectators. They will be among thousands of cyclists taking part in Etape Loch Ness – many of whom will be raising money for good causes including the event’s charity partner, Macmillan Cancer Support.
Event director Malcolm Sutherland says. “JBT are an integral part of our event team, and it is great that so many of their staff have caught the cycling bug. We are delighted to see such a strong contingent from JBT this year.
“Etape Loch Ness is becoming more and more popular with the business community because companies can see the benefit of encouraging staff to take part. Not only are they improving their health and wellbeing by getting out and taking part in regular exercise, it also fosters a team spirit within the workplace.”
ETAPE LOCH NESS