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“It was simply the most rewarding experience I’ve ever been involved in”

08 August 2017

Mike Wilson

The Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 is a cycling event like no other, offering the chance to ride through 100 miles of closed roads, weaving through the capital and into Surrey’s beautiful countryside culminating in a spectacular finish in central London.

This year Mike Wilson took on the challenge, raising a fantastic £1,574 for Ovarian Cancer Action. Here he talks about the thrills (and spills) of the UK’s biggest cycling extravaganza, and how the memory of his Mum's determination kept him pedalling…

“Having been talked into taking part in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 by my best friend, just a few weeks after buying a road bike, I had no idea what lay ahead. I’d be the first to admit my training was probably lighter than it should’ve been. But aided by commuting to work and general gym classes, I thought I’d be ok with at least one big ride before the big day. My plans were slightly scuppered by a fall two weeks out, which required a full groupset replacement, and only getting my bike back four days before the ride.

Luckily the adrenaline of the start of the ride, plus the incredible support from the various charities and the public at the roadside helped spur me on throughout the ride.

Even with all this wonderful encouragement, the true motivation came from my reason for taking part; my Mum. Having lost her six-and-a-half-year battle to ovarian cancer at the end of 2015, it truly rocked my family and me.

However, knowing how she fought so stoically, I felt I couldn’t stop riding just because my legs wanted to. Having seen her determination and strength in such adversity, characteristics I admired in her so much, I really felt I had no choice but to keep pedalling.

Fortunately, this strength and determination came at some pretty useful times, in particular Leith Hill and, just when you think you’re nearly on the home straight, the last kicker of Wimbledon Hill!

Having taken part in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100, and raised money on behalf of Ovarian Cancer Action, it was simply the most rewarding experience I’ve ever been involved in.

The feeling of relief and joy to have accomplished the ride under my target time; to have raised such crucial money to support a great charity; and the emotional journey, all add up to a hugely rewarding experience.

Whether you’re a keen cyclist or not, I’d definitely suggest taking part in 2018. You won’t regret it — just make sure you wear padded shorts!”