A group of 30 leading figures in the office supplies industry took on the 100km cycling event, Ride of Life, on 7th September, in aid of The Institute of Cancer Research, London.
The round trip started and finished at the Sutton campus of The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR). The group conquered both the intimidating Box and Leith Hills in Surrey, with the ride totalling an elevation of over 3,000 feet.
The organisers, Sean Starkey and Steve Robinson, are old colleagues with Graeme Chapman. Graeme has been leading the Climb of Life – an annual fundraising event for the ICR, which has been going for 30 years, and has raised almost £1million for the research institute and charity. He invited the pair to join the Climb of Life walk but, being avid cyclists, they thought they would rather cycle, and so the idea for Ride of Life was born.
Sean Starkey said, “I lost both of my parents to cancer – my mother when I was young; she was just 41 when she died from breast cancer. My father had bowel cancer and was 77. Cancer has affected my life so much, as it has with so many other people. This has been a huge motivator for me in organising the event.
“I have been pleasantly surprised by how many of my friends and colleagues have come out of the woodwork as keen or aspiring cyclists. The support we’ve had has been overwhelming. We have had other colleagues, customers, manufacturers and people from the press join us. It’s fantastic that the event has been so well supported in its first year.”
A fundraising auction was also held which included a seat in the neutral service car at a professional cycling race in 2019, donated by Brother, and a bike fitting for the winning bidder by former Swedish pro cyclist and Paris-Roubaix winner Magnus Bäckstedt.
Steve Robinson, who co-organised the Ride of Life added, “it has been an honour to be involved in this inaugural Ride of Life which has been a really exciting event. The route went through beautiful Surrey villages, climbed iconic and dramatic hills and explored some wonderful rolling countryside. There was great camaraderie amongst our industry colleagues and friends, and to top it off, this has been an amazing fundraising effort by all involved.”
Of the 30 riders, from manufacturers, trade press and resellers, three were BOSS staff members; Amy Hutchinson, Charles Jarrold and Jon Rice.
BOSS would like to thank the organising committee,
Sean Starkey, Chairman & Founder
Steve Robinson, Co Founder & Committee member
Kiran Mistry, Treasurer
Steve Hilleard, Organising Committee
As well as the support and coordination team,
Frances Stephen, Monika Starkey, Janet Bell, Chris Exner and Kelly Hilleard.
To date £13,372.04 has been raised - to support the Ride of Life and donate to the ICR, click here.