Matt Baker provides update on Rickshaw Challenge after positive coronavirus test

The One Show’s annual Rickshaw Challenge for BBC Children In Need is to go virtual after a member of the film crew tested positive for coronavirus, Matt Baker has said.

The challenge, which is in its 10th year, began on Saturday morning at the Goodwood Estate in West Sussex led by TV presenter Baker.

He and six young people who have been supported by Children In Need aimed to ride 332 miles in the grounds in a rickshaw, but it was halted after the positive coronavirus test.

Baker appeared on The One Show to provide an update on the challenge, saying it was “heart-breaking” to hear of the positive test but revealing the event would go virtual.

He spoke while seated on a rickshaw that was tied in place with a milometer attached, and said exercise bikes would be sent to the other contestants.

Baker said: “And we’re just, basically, virtually, going to rack up the miles. So we probably won’t go very far in reality, but in distance, as far as our wheels are concerned, we’re going to try and get to that 332 miles. Come on, we can do this, I’m sure we can.”

He said the riders would be in conversation throughout the challenge.

Baker added: “The whole idea is to just crack on until Friday night, the big Children In Need night.”

Announcing the positive test, a statement from BBC Children In Need said: “The safety of the young people on Team Rickshaw is of paramount importance.

“As a precautionary measure, a decision has been made to send the young participants home from the challenge today.

“The One Show team are currently exploring ways in which Matt Baker and Team Rickshaw can continue the challenge together safely from home.

“Ahead of the challenge, following medical advice, a set of robust safety measures were put in place to minimise the risk of infection to all of those involved.

“On site the team was following Government guidelines with strict social distancing measures enforced at all times and routine testing was scheduled several times throughout the challenge to ensure early detection and elimination of any Covid-19 cases.

“During one of these routine tests, a positive result was confirmed amongst a member of the crew and immediate action was taken.”

Among those taking part in the 2020 challenge is Lewis, 18, from Coventry, who had his leg amputated when he was diagnosed with bone cancer in 2017.

It is the latest TV event affected by coronavirus after a live episode of Little Mix The Search and filming for the Britain’s Got Talent Christmas special were disrupted following positive tests among crew.