The countdown is on until Davina’s Big Sussex Bike Ride returns to the county and places are quickly filling up. Last year saw around 450 riders taking part, all helping to raise more than £32,000 for Action Medical Research. Abby Lacey, an Office Manager from Reading, is saddling up for the challenge on 25 June. She sat down with Action to talk more about training, her team and her reasons for getting involved.
Abby Lacey's gearing up for the Big Sussex Bike Ride with her 'merry maidens' #TeamBadInfluences
How long have you been a fan of cycling?
Spurred on by my super-cyclist husband, I started cycling in the year running up to my 40th birthday. I challenged myself to complete 40 tasks before the ‘big day’, one of which was to complete a charity bike ride. In September 2015, I completed the London to Reading bike ride and from there I guess I just got the bug.
What prompted you to sign up to Davina’s Big Sussex Bike Ride?
Well, after London to Brighton, we wanted to carry on our team cycling and not only is the Davina ride longer, but also Action Medical Research is a great charity which is very close to my heart.
In 1990 I was lucky enough (!) to undergo surgery for scoliosis. It is something that changed my life, allowing me to pursue an active lifestyle and take on these sorts of challenges. Action Medical Research has funded many studies in this area and it’s probably fair to say that without Action, I might not be on my bike!
You’re not going to be cycling alone are you?
No, last year me and my group of merry maidens formed #TeamBadInfluences and so we will all be having a go. I’ve known most of the girls for almost four years as our kids are all at school together. Some of them have been lifelong friends. They’re a great bunch – we spur each other on to take on these sorts of challenges.
What are you looking forward to the most about the ride?
I think the camaraderie, being with friends and like-minded folk and also the sense of achievement. After all, 68 miles is a long way!
What are you looking forward to the least?!
Ha – definitely the hills!
Would you recommend this event to other people?
Absolutely, yes! I really like the fact that there are different ride length options – you don’t all have to do the long ride. If 68 miles feels a little daunting, there’s a 40 or a 21 mile route. It promises to be a great day out and a wonderful opportunity to see the Sussex countryside. And of course Action Medical Research is such a fantastic cause! I’m just really excited to be doing my bit.