A motorcycle racer is swapping his wheels for leg power to raise funds for a mercy service that saved his colleague’s life.

Andrew Lund, from Wilsden, is tackling the Berlin Marathon in September in support of the air ambulance organisation.

And he will be joined in the challenge by his former fellow racer, Nick Matthews, whose 120mph crash last summer almost killed him.

Mr Matthews, 47, broke 19 bones – including his back in three places, his neck and sternum – and punctured a lung after careering off the Oulton Park circuit in Cheshire during a practice session.

Extensive surgery was carried out, including the insertion of titanium rods in his back, and he was warned he may not walk again.

“Nick should be dead considering the massive injuries he suffered but he’s done amazingly,” said father-of-two Mr Lund, 40.

“When he was in his hospital bed he vowed to run a marathon, and we made a pact. I said if he did I would join him, so here we are!

“Nick did a lot of running prior to his accident but I haven’t run before, so it’s a new thing for me.

“We started training some time ago and are building up the distances, but Nick lives in Leicester-shire so it’s difficult for us to train together.”

The pair have set a combined fundraising target of £10,000, and are almost halfway towards that.

Mr Lund met his colleague at a race three years ago. “I was just starting out in motorcycle racing and we were competing against each other,” said Mr Lund.

“We instantly hit it off and became good buddies. Nick isn’t able to race now but he’s my chief mechanic.

“I started racing quite late in life but had a surprising level of success. I’m now competing in the national championship – and leading it – against people half my age.

“I’ve promised my wife Trudy and the family this will be my final season of racing, so my target is to finish with the championship.”

The self-employed property developer races semi-professionally, with backing from Bunton Plant Hire.

Sponsor the duo at justgiving. co.uk/nickmatthews57.