The Starley Sportive set to break fundraising record

A major Coventry and Warwickshire cycling event is on track to break its fundraising record as last year’s main charity reveals the incredible impact the event has had.

The Starley Sportive raised more than £10,000 last year, despite the event taking place virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions. Organisers are hoping for a huge turnout this year and are expecting to raise even more money with more than 300 participants already signed up.

The Myton Hospices will be one of three main beneficiaries for this year’s event, which takes place on Sunday, September 19, alongside Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice and University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire Charity. Participants are also encouraged to raise funds for important personal causes.

Ruth Tandy, Challenge and Events Fundraising Coordinator for The Myton Hospices, said: “We are delighted to be part of the Starley Sportive. It is a family-friendly local event which brings together cyclists, local artists and charities all in aid of good causes in the community.

“Our community is at the heart of everything that we do and we want to reach out to as many people as possible to let them know about our services, should they need them now or in the future.

“We have a team of 21 riders taking part and we are hoping to raise in excess of £2000. This could fund a patient specific recliner chair to enable patients to spend time out of bed with their loved ones.

“We will be there on the day to cheer our riders on and will have a stand where people can find out more about our vital work. We are really looking forward to it!”

Bethany Richardson, Community and Events Fundraiser for Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice, added: “Last year Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice were incredibly grateful to receive over £5,800 from the Starley Sportive.

“The fantastic amount raised last year and in previous years has allowed us to continue to stay open during our most testing 12 months yet, providing care and support to babies and infants with life threatening and life limiting illnesses and their families.

“The Starley Sportive is a brilliant event and we are extremely thankful for their ongoing support. Year after year they have gone above and beyond and it is so very much appreciated.

“If you would like to take part for Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice this year, please do contact us via challenge@zoes-place.org.uk – we would be delighted to hear from you!”

Riders will set off from the Deeley Group head office on Herald Avenue, Coventry, and have the choice of challenging three distances – a 28.6 mile route, a 63.2 mile long-distance ride, or the mammoth 86.5 mile challenge.

Ian Court, Racing Secretary at Coventry Road Club, said: “The Starley Sportive has proved over the last few years that there is plenty of excitement around cycling in Coventry and Warwickshire, and a massive part of that is the incredible fundraising that we have been able to achieve.

“There are three routes once again this year to suit a range of abilities, and we would love to see as many riders as possible saddling up for one of our fantastic main charities or for a cause close to their heart.

“The virtual ride that we hosted last year was a huge success, and we are grateful to all who participated, but there is nothing like being out on the road with likeminded people. I’m sure it will be a memorable day, and would be even better if we can break our fundraising record.”

Edward Hudson, Business Development Manager at the Deeley Group, said: “With last year’s event being cancelled, it would be great to see people making the most this opportunity to do some real good for the amazing charities in our local area.

“More than an act of kindness, we expect the day to be enjoyable for all. After a difficult 12 months it’s a great opportunity to socialise and get active and we’re hoping for another huge turnout.”

PICTURE CAPTION:  From left to right – Natalie Humphrey (The Myton Hospices), Ian Court (Starley Sportive), Jo O’Sullivan (Charity director, University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire Charity), Edward Hudson (Deeley Group) and Bethany Richardson (Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice).