Weston cyclist takes on RideLondon-Surrey 100 after mum's heart attack
PUBLISHED: 17:35 07 August 2019
A cyclist from Weston took part in RideLondon-Surrey 100 on Sunday, inspired to raise money for charity after his mum had life-saving surgery following a heart attack.
Simon Race, 54, was one of 500 British Heart Foundation Champions who completed the 100-mile ride - setting off from Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and heading into the Surrey countryside, before heading back into London and up The Mall to the finish line.
Simon's mum, Maureen, had a heart attack two years ago. She had reconstructive surgery on her mitral valve and an ICD fitted, but she hasn't let this stop her. The 81-year-old has since joined a gym and goes twice a week.
Simon's wife, Susie, lost her dad to a heart attack when he was 51. She was at the ride, cheering Simon on.
The BHF team collectively raised £250,000, with Simon individually raising £1,100.
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Money raised by Team BHF will go to the Miles Frost Fund, which helps the charity fund genetic testing for families at risk of inherited heart conditions and support vital research into improving diagnosis and treatments of these conditions.
The fund was set up by the family of Miles Frost, who died from an undiagnosed inherited heart condition at just 31.
Simon said: "Taking on the ride was a truly phenomenal experience. The sense of comradery amongst the cyclists was so uplifting, especially up the more difficult hills, and I loved spotting the red jerseys of other BHF riders along the way.
"I was pretty tired towards the end, but the incredible views of London and the excitement from the crowds made for an exhilarating atmosphere, which carried me across the finish line.
"It feels amazing to know all of my fundraising efforts, and time and commitment that went into my training, will help the BHF to beat heartbreak from inherited heart conditions."
Liam O'Reilly, programme lead at the BHF, said: "We're so grateful to Simon and the tremendous fleet of BHF riders.
"Thanks to the will and dedication of each and every BHF champion we will be able to fund the rollout of even more genetic testing for families at risk of inherited heart conditions and support vital research into improving diagnosis and treatments of deadly inherited heart conditions."