BBC Radio 1 DJ Arielle Free is halfway through the longest rave of her life in cycling challenge like no other for Red Nose Day

7th March 2023

  • “This is so much tougher than I expected” Arielle Free admits as she completes first 20 hours of her ‘Tour de Dance’ Red Nose Challenge, through York and Leeds

  • Arielle tackles day three of this tyre-some challenge, facing the hardest day yet with another 10 hours of cycling across Sheffield whilst DJing live

  • Support from famous friends such as Zara Larsson, Alison Hammond and Sam Ryder help Arielle to keep the wheels turning and the DJ decks spinning

  • Money raised from the challenge will go to Comic Relief to help people through the toughest times of their lives, in the UK and around the world

  • Red Nose Day returns on Friday 17 March

  • For more information and to support Arielle visit: in new window)

Tuesday 7 March 2023: Today, fatigued BBC Radio 1’s Arielle Free, is tackling the streets of Sheffield for day three of her ambitious Red Nose Day challenge, where she is attempting to cycle for 50 hours, across five cities in five days, all whilst DJing live, in the ultimate test of stamina, strength and endurance.

Joined by Radio 1 listeners, day one of the challenge saw Arielle set off from York St John University, and whizz past the beautiful sights of the York Theatre Royal, over the River Ouse and along the York City Walls.

Throughout day two of the challenge in Leeds, Arielle was faced with a number of almighty hills as she struggled to pedal the heavy and hefty 10-person bike, which has NO gears and is designed for flat roads. But she managed to complete the day which saw her kick off from Leeds University and scoot past Headingley, home of the historic Yorkshire County Cricket Club.

The incredible support of Radio 1 listeners on the bike and at home are hugely spurring Arielle on and helping her get through the hardest moments.

Having already conquered 20 hours of cycling through York and Leeds, Arielle is facing another relentless day of cycling while DJing, through the streets of Sheffield, peddling through freezing weather and joined by Radio 1 DJ Vick Hope for three hours to power through another day of tortuous hills.

Arielle will then be heading to Manchester on Wednesday and Liverpool on Thursday for the finish line. With the muscles in Arielle’s legs, hips and glutes in pain and constantly tightening, she is having to go through agonising physio to keep those wheels turning.

Arielle Free said: “This is so much harder than I ever imagined. I was so excited to get going and I think the adrenaline pulled me through day one, but by the end I was absolutely shattered!

I’m hurting in places I didn’t even know I could hurt in. I knew my legs would suffer, but my arms and shoulders are on fire from the constant DJing! I am so happy to have the support of the other people on the bike, I really don’t think I would be able to get through it without them. We will complete this cycle rave together!”

Alison Hammond said: “I am so proud of you, you’re absolutely smashing it! I’m so glad you did it, because it means that I didn’t have to! Thank you babes, I owe you one, I love you so very much, you’re doing such a great thing, for such a great cause!”

Zara Larsson said: “I think it’s absolutely amazing what you’re doing for Comic Relief, and I wish you all the best. I’m not jealous, but I love what you’re doing, keep cycling and stay strong.”

Sam Ryder said: “We are all rooting for you. Go and raise loads of cash for a good cause!”

You can catch up with how Arielle is getting on by tuning into Radio 1, the BBC Sounds app and through social media. You can also catch up with Arielle at the end of each day by listening in on Vick Hope and Jordan North’s show, ‘Tour de Dance for Red Nose Day’ which is being broadcast live from each of the cities Arielle is cycling through.

Please show your support for Arielle to get her through the longest rave of her life to raise life changing money for Comic Relief. The money raised will help support people struggling with the cost-of-living crisis and tackle issues such as homelessness, mental health problems, and food poverty here in the UK and around the world.

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About BBC Radio 1 BBC Radio 1 is the UK’s No.1 youth station, targeting 15 to 29 year-olds with a distinctive mix of new music and programmes focusing on issues affecting young people. The station is the soundtrack to young people's lives in the UK and has been for over 50 years.

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About Red Nose Day Red Nose Day is back on Friday 17 March 2023.

Once a year, we all come together to help those who need it most – and we have a great time doing it. So, this year, whether you bake a cake or sponsor your mates, buy a Red Nose or donate on your phone, let’s make Red Nose Day the best day ever. Together we can help people going through the toughest times of their lives and help them break free from the effects of poverty, in the UK and around the world.

Whatever you’re able to do this year - you’ll be part of something incredible and most importantly you’ll be helping to change people’s lives for the better. Visit in new window) or follow @ComicRelief on social media for the latest Red Nose Day content, news and information.

Red Nose Day is an initiative of Comic Relief.

About Comic Relief

Comic Relief uses the power of humour and popular culture to engage people to help others and raises money to support organisations working towards a just world free from poverty.

Our mission combines Comic and Relief. We believe that helping others can be easy and fun, even in the face of the challenges we face every day.

Everyone should be able to have a decent standard of living and to live life with dignity and respect – but right now, in the UK and around the world, poverty and injustice restrict too many of us. We know that a better world is possible. We provide funding to fantastic organisations who are closest to the communities who can make change happen. We support work that will help to alleviate poverty’s consequences, tackle related injustices, and address the link between climate change and poverty.

For information about Comic Relief and the work it carries out, please visit in new window) or follow @ComicRelief on social media for the latest content, news and information.

Comic Relief is the operating name of Charity Projects, registered charity in England & Wales (326568) and Scotland (SC039730).