Rugby league star Josh Charnley is joining Jack for his charity bike ride

Jack Johnson and Josh Charnley look forward to the Wigan Bike Ride, where a participant raising money for Joining Jack will be able to win this watch
Jack Johnson and Josh Charnley look forward to the Wigan Bike Ride, where a participant raising money for Joining Jack will be able to win this watch
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A brave schoolboy will take part in a charity bike ride this month – with help from a famous friend.

Chorley’s resident rugby league star Josh Charnley, who plays for Super League side Warrington Wolves, is among the cyclists tackling the second annual bike ride for charity Joining Jack.

Jack with dad Andy, who is a former Wigan Warriors star himself.

Jack with dad Andy, who is a former Wigan Warriors star himself.

Charnley, a former star for Wigan Warriors, will have a tagalong attached to the back of his bicycle carrying his son Arlo and 10-year-old Jack Johnson, who inspired his parents to set up the Joining Jack charity.

They will take part in the five-mile family ride on Sunday, July 22, as it travels through Wigan starting at Mesnes Park.

Josh said: “I’m really looking forward to it. I thought it would be a fun thing for us to do and for Arlo to take part in his first Joining Jack event.

“I mentioned it to Jack and he said why don’t I jump in the tagalong?’

Charnley now plays for Warrington Wolves following spells with Wigan Warriors and Sale Sharks (Photo: PA).

Charnley now plays for Warrington Wolves following spells with Wigan Warriors and Sale Sharks (Photo: PA).

“I’m sure it will be another great day for everyone and I’m honoured to be able to take Jack around - I’m sure the two of them will have a great time in the back while I’m pulling them around.”

Mum Alex Johnson, who set up Joining Jack with husband and former Warriors player Andy after son Jack was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, said: “It’s lovely that Jack is going to take part thanks to Josh.

“Our first bike ride was brilliant last year, all Jack’s family got to take part, even his little brother James did the family ride with stabilisers on.

“It was just a shame that Jack didn’t get to ride, although he was a real trooper helping to man the first water station.”

Alex, who lives in Eccleston with Jack and Andy, added: “Riding a bike is something that most boys with Duchenne never get to do because they just haven’t got the muscle power in their legs, so when Josh came up with the idea of riding with the tagalong, it seemed like the perfect solution.

“Josh has been a fantastic ambassador for the charity and a really great friend and inspiration for Jack. They have a lovely friendship so it seems appropriate that he is the one to take Jack around.”

Josh added: “I’m honoured to be taking Jack around on his first event. Let’s make it extra special. Sign up if you haven’t already.”

Cyclists can sign up now for the main 50-mile bike ride or the family mile. Fund-raisers who collect more than £100 will be entered into a draw for the chance to win a Festina watch - the official timekeeper for the Tour De France - donated by PMH Jewellery in Standish.

Register at www.wiganbikeride.co.uk