1. ITV Report

Olympic medalist Rebecca Adlington will ride through Zambia for charity

Rebecca Adlington and Ross Davenport train for the charity bike ride across Africa Photo: PA Pictures

Mansfield's Rebecca Adlington is to ride through Zambia, in Africa, for charity in an effort to raise money for the Perfect Day Foundation.

The Olympic medalist will cycle from Livingstone, in the very south of the country, to Lusaka, some 280 miles north of her start point.

"Cycling is very different to what I'm used to and I've struggled a bit with my confidence on the bike, but I've done some good test runs in the last few weeks and I've spoken to Chris Hoy to get some tips."

– Rebecca Adlington

Adlington will be joined by 2008 Olympic bronze medalist Joanne Jackson, former Commonwealth champion Ross Davenport, and ex-swimmer Melanie Marshall.

The swimmers hope to raise £50,000 for Sport In Action, a non-government funded organisation that inspires change within impoverished communities through sport.

Cycling around Africa is a far cry from what Rebecca is used to Credit: PA Pictures

"Bike for Africa is a great challenge and I'm really looking forward to getting out to Zambia for what I'm sure will be one of the most amazing and unforgettable experiences of my life."

– Rebecca Adlington

Once the team has reached the finish point in Lusaka, Rebecca will give swimming lessons to street children and children who have lost parents to AIDS, at a renovated open air pool which Melanie Marshall helped to raise funds for.

A map of the 280 mile route Credit: Google Maps

Bike for Africa runs an orphanage for street children and uses sport to educate and inspire children, who have lost their parents to AIDS.

The ride will last four days and cover nearly 300 miles. The team fly out to Livingstone to start their ride tomorrow.