When Ride London 100 was launched last year I entered, but I didn’t win a place in the Ballot. So instead I looked through the list of Charities and to my surprise Save the Rhino was there. So I sent them a passionate email and they gave me a place. The Ride 100 is the Olympic route for amateurs; its 100 miles starting at the Olympic Park and finishing on the Mall.
The event was a huge success, out of the 20,000 riders that entered 16,000 took part. The riders were released in waves starting at A and I was in S, third from the end. From the start it was fast but huge fun. We rode through closed roads through East London, then through the city, down to Richmond and out into the Surrey Hills. We did a couple of hills including the iconic Box Hill and then back through Kingston, Wimbledon along the Embankment, past the houses of parliament and finished on Pall Mall exactly the like pro riders.
It was a very special ride for me as I know the whole route so well, it is largely made up of the commuting rides I do to the office and the rides into the Surrey hills with Twickenham CC. Riding on these roads with no traffic is amazing. Riding with some great people was a real experience and the finish was quite emotional coming down the Mall. Its as close as you can get to understanding what the pros must feel like.
I did it in 5:41, which considering I wasn’t in a team, I was quite pleased.
One of the highlights was coming across Boris Johnson on his bike and having a chat with him about the event and cycling in London. He’s a character.
Please help me Save the Rhinos
The more I hear about Rhinos and their plight the more I am concerned. Some countries in the Far East have decided that Rhino horn will cure all known ailments. As a result poaching has been rife and they estimate that there is one Rhino killed a day in Africa. With an estimated population of less than 600 in Kenya, its not going to take long for them to be highly endangered.
And its not just the Rhinos, so many animals in Africa are experiencing the same fate. Few people realise the scale of the problem and I think its up to us to make sure it is communicated so we can protect the animals for our children The Save the Rhino charity does amazing work, but there funds are so limited.