I've been exceptionally lucky this year to get a place in the annual RideLondon–Surrey 100 – part of a world-class festival of cycling taking place over the second weekend in August. The ride itself is a hundred-mile challenge on closed roads, followed by a real race for the professionals. It should be a fantastic event, with 20,000 riders starting from the Olympic Park early on the Sunday morning and most of us hopefully making it to the finish on The Mall in time for lunch.
My lucky place may have had something to do with putting Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research down on the entry form. In fact, the first I knew about my ride was getting a congratulatory email from the them rather than the organisers. They were then kind enough to say that they wouldn't chase me for their £600 sponsorship target for the Prudential ride because I'd got my own place. But I then noticed that they have their own ride – the 2014 London Bikeathon – which is the largest charity cycling event in the UK and has been going since 1997. LLR itself has been working to beat blood cancer for over fifty years. The charity receives no government funding and is entirely dependent on voluntary donations from fundraising events or individuals.
So... I'm going to concentrate on the Bikeathon, on 31 August – together, I hope, with my brother Oliver and son Sam, plus about 6,000 others. It's an excellent cause, in my view (I'm biased, as I have myelofibrosis myself) but I hope some of you will support us, and LLR.
Thanks for reading this. Now I'd better get some miles in. Wish us luck!