Portland's Olympic gold medalist is backing tickled pink cancer campaign

PINK POWER: Helena Lucas at Asda

PINK POWER: Helena Lucas at Asda

First published in News Dorset Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

GOLDEN girl Helena Lucas is getting tickled pink for charity.

The Paralympic sailing champion encouraged customers at Asda on Newstead Road to donate to the chain’s cancer campaign.

Entering its 16th year, the Tickled Pink campaign benefits two breast cancer charities – Breast Cancer Care and Breast Cancer Campaign. Since it began the charity drive has raised over £29million.

The 37-year-old, from Portland, spent time chatting to customers at the Tickled Pink stand which will be based in the store’s foyer until November 2.

She said: “It is a fantastic cause and if me coming down with my gold medal increases donations then that is great.”

A host of Olympic-themed goods are on offer at the stall where donations can be made and customers can take part in the campaign’s bingo competition.

Helena enjoyed a golden summer on the home waters of Weymouth and Portland as she won the 2.4mR class and became the British sailing team’s first-ever Paralympic gold medallist.

She added: “Since the home games my life has been absolutely amazing and it is all thanks to the support of the British public. Because of this I find it important to give back so that is why I wanted to come and help out at Asda.”

The sailing star is now aiming to top the podium at the next Games.

She said: “It would be great to go to Rio and if I can do the double with another gold, that would be awesome.

“No-one in Paralympic sailing has achieved that yet so that would just be a great achievement to go and do.”

Andy Felix, general store manager, said: “This year Asda would like to get the overall total to more than £30million. It is great that Helena came down today.”

Sandy West, community life champion at the store, donated many Olympic-themed goods to the cause which she collected as Weymouth and Portland Olympic ambassador and a gamesmaker.

She said: “It is a cause close to our hearts here at Asda because we have had two colleagues in the past who were diagnosed with breast cancer.”

Pupils from Beechcroft St Paul’s Primary and Underhill Junior School headed to Asda to meet their sailing hero.

The store will host a charity fundraising event at Aura bar on the seafront on Sunday October 14.

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