More than 500 keen cyclists descended on Clitheroe for the fifth Ribble Valley Ride, which has been described as the "best yet".
he event – organised by Rotary in Clitheroe and Accrington – for once enjoyed perfect weather as 550 riders ventured as far as Malham, Aysgarth and Hawes on rides of 60 and 100 miles, with over 100 opting for the 25-mile circular route through Waddington, Cow Ark and Chipping.
Now a major fundraiser, looking to donate around £12,000 to the Rosemere Cancer Foundation, Dan’s Trust and the NW Air Ambulance service, the cycle sportive started and finished at The Fell Bike Triathlon Centre on the outskirts of Clitheroe. Over 50 cyclists had entered to raise sponsorship for Steve Burne Rooms, who so far have collected over £350,000 to enable families to stay together when their child is in hospital. Steve, a Manchester businessman, who is seriously ill with terminal cancer, nevertheless made it to the start to see off some of his supporters – a poignant moment for many.
Riders came from almost every corner of Britain – arriving from 6-30am onwards – to take part in the annual race.
Paul, who had come all the way from Somerset, said: “Huge praise and thanks to the organisers and sponsors of the 2018 Ribble Valley Ride. The organisation was truly military and seamless. Super venue and food. Beautiful day in truly stunning countryside. Not cycled around that area before, but I’m looking forward to the 2019 event! Well done!”
Event organiser, Bill Honeywell, commented: “After the bad weather last year, many cyclists waited until the last minute before entering, which had us a bit worried for a while.
“But in the week before the event, and on the day, the support from entries was fantastic, making this our best-ever year.
“The number of people involved is amazing – the cyclists themselves; an army of volunteer stewards, all of whom give up the whole day to help and travel to far-flung locations; arranging hundreds of direction signs; sponsors including Dare2B clothing and Envair pharmaceutical services; the various services at the start/finish, including Whalley Physiotherapy who provide massages for those tired legs; the bakers and other food suppliers; and, of course, the close-knit organising team who are kept busy for months beforehand – we’re grateful to them all.”