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ALLAN RITCHIE CASE STUDY

Lewis Reed is delighted to announce that it will be supporting Allan Ritchie as he competes for his for his ongoing place in Great Britain’s Para Trap Shooting Team in 2018.

Olympic Trap was recognised by the International Paralympic Committee in 2017 and came under the control of World Shooting Para Sport where it was re-branded as Para Trap. Other than a name change, this is exactly the same discipline shot at World and Olympic level by able-bodied athletes. The sport is now undergoing a test period with the hope of it being accepted within the Paralympics at a later date, however, there is now a recognised World Cup Circuit for the discipline, which culminates in a yearly World Championship.

“I cannot thank Lewis Reed enough for their incredibly kind gesture of support.  Unfortunately, Olympic Trap is entirely self-funded by the athlete. Until it becomes a recognised Paralympic event there will be no funding available to assist with travel (land/air), cartridges, accommodation, competition fees, cost of targets etc. from the sports governing body. Lewis Reed’s support is therefore extremely helpful as it will effectively fuel my vehicle for the majority of the thousands of miles I will have to drive around the UK for training, local competition, and GB Selection shoots, all in the pursuit of maintaining GB eligibility and representing Great Britain at elite level in world competition”

Allan’s relationship with Lewis Reed began over 2 years ago when he started looking for a new wheelchair accessible vehicle (WAV) as he explained:  “I have been a T10 incomplete paraplegic since my spinal cord injury in December 2014. After being discharged from hospital in April 2015, I looked at several vehicle adaption options, which culminated in my Land Rover Discovery being adapted with hand controls.  This gave me my first real taste of independence since my SCI but I found it difficult to manoeuvre my wheelchair in and out of the vehicle by myself. I almost took a nosedive on several occasions so this was not a long-term solution.”

Allan started looking at various WAV solutions and during this research was introduced to Geraldine Brown and the rest of team at Lewis Reed.  “From my initial conversation with Geraldine she could not do enough to help, even sending a demonstration vehicle form the company HQ in Liverpool all the way to my home, which is north of Aberdeen so I could have a test drive.  This level of customer service from a company based so far away was outstanding.”  Following a successful test drive Allan arranged to visit the Lewis Reed facility in Liverpool where he met with Ian Newton and Andy Kane who would be responsible for his bespoke vehicle.  Following a meeting, during which Allan explained what he was looking for in terms of a vehicle and its capabilities, he placed his order.  “It really was a simple as that – when you have the combination of a superb vehicle and equally superb customer care, why look anywhere else.” continued Allan.

Allan’s vehicle is a Volkswagen Caravelle Executive 2.0TDI.  Among the features on Allan’s vehicle are a rear tail lift for simple access in and out of the vehicle, tip and fold seats and a six-way transfer seat.   The Caravelle SE and Executive both offer superb levels of specification and trim along with a choice of petrol or diesel engines.  The six-speed manual gearbox can be operated via an easy-to-reach dash-mounted gear lever or customers can opt for the convenience of the seven-speed, Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG).  There is also the option of two different wheelbases on the SE. The Caravelle also comes with three wheelchair seating options; front, middle or rear.

What difference has Allan’s Lewis Reed vehicle made to him?  “It is hard to put into words what a difference both Lewis Reed and my WAV have made.  Having the independence to drive anywhere is just amazing.  For example, in March 2017, I heard about the IPC’s decision recognise Olympic Trap and decided that it was something I wanted to be involved in. After driving over 5,800 miles around Scotland and England for weekly training and shooting in competitions and GB selection shoots, I was delighted to be selected by British Shooting as first reserve for the Class 1 GB Team for the first World Championship held in Lonato, Italy 2017.

An epic road trip in the WAV through Scotland, England, France and Italy ensued. My father and I enjoyed a great time on the 3,400-mile round trip for this competition, although I don’t think I ever want to see a French tollbooth again! My position as reserve was not called upon, so I did not get to shoot in the World Championship. I did however shoot in the 7th International Grand Prix, which ran alongside the World Championship on the same layouts and targets, and took the Silver Medal.  None of this would have been possible without my vehicle and the 5 star support I have received since day one from Geraldine and everyone at Lewis Reed. Lewis Reed’s generous support of my ongoing training is just the icing on the cake” concluded Allan.

“It is an absolute pleasure to support Allan in his dream of representing Team GB during the 2018 World Cup Season.  Every member of the team is a true inspiration and Allan is no exception in the way he has overcome his spinal cord injury to return to the sport he loves.  Everyone here at Lewis Reed will be following his progress with great interest” commented Lewis Reed’s Managing Director Dr Peter Scullion.

 

Lewis Reed is one of only three official Volkswagen WAV converters in UK. For more information on the full range of wheelchair accessible vehicles available from Lewis Reed call 0151 343 5360 or browse our website. You can also follow Lewis Reed on Twitter @lewisreedgroup and facebook /lewisreedwavltd.

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Should you be interested in learning more about how Lewis Reed can help you, please either give us a call on 0151 343 5360, or by filling in the contact form below.

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