Vitus Pro Cycling’s Cherie Pridham, the only female team owner and manager in the British peloton, will support Phil Jones MBE’s Tour of Britain One Day Ahead fundraising ride as sporting director.
Pridham, who rode 10 Grand Tours in an era of epic races for the women’s sport, and whose managerial expertise has yielded victories in some of the most prestigious races on the domestic calendar, including the Lincoln Grand Prix, will be a vital presence in the convoy of support vehicles for Jones’ 1,140-kilometre ride.
Jones, the managing director of Brother UK, will ride the entire 2018 OVO Energy Tour of Britain route one day ahead of the race with cancer survivor and cycling world record holder James Golding in a bid to raise £50,000 for the Dave Rayner Fund. Some of Britain’s most successful cyclists, including Grand Tour stage winners Adam Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) and David Millar enjoyed the support of the fund at a critical stage in their careers.
“I’m delighted to support Phil and James in what will undoubtedly be a hugely challenging ride,” Pridham said. “This year’s Tour of Britain course is arguably the most demanding in the modern era of the race, and there will be moments when each rider is forced to explore their deepest reserves of strength, both physical and mental, if they’re to complete such a gruelling course.”
The 2018 Tour of Britain route includes a double ascent of Cumbria’s Whinlatter Pass on Stage Six – a day after the climb is tackled from its western side in a 14-kilometre team time trial. Jones and Golding will tackle every inch of the eight-stage race, starting their odyssey in Carmarthenshire on Saturday 1 September – one day ahead of the world’s elite professional riders.
— Phil Jones MBE (@roadphil) 4 June 2018
“I’m under no illusions about the scale of the challenge, and to be able to call upon the advice of someone as experienced as Cherie, whose knowledge has been built over thousands of hours in the saddle and at the wheel of a team car will be a huge advantage,” Jones said.
“Having raced on the Monte Zoncolan and Alpe d’Huez in the Giro Rosa and Women’s Tour de France, Cherie knows more than a little about suffering. I’m confident that her hard-won experience will help to guide us through the toughest moments of the #TOB1DA ride.”
Under Jones’ leadership, Brother UK has become a committed and generous supporter of British cycle sport. The technology business, which this year celebrates its fiftieth anniversary, sponsors seven domestic teams, as well as providing a fleet of neutral service vehicles, equipped with Canyon bikes, to the biggest races in the UK. It also sponsors the Tour of Britain, the Women’s Tour and the Tour Series, and is official printing and results partner of each.
Jones’ vision of long-term sustainability for British cycle sport and the affect of Brother UK’s investments in raising the professionalism of the domestic peloton has allowed him to call upon a groundswell of support for the #TOB1DA ride. With a fundraising target of £50,000 for the Dave Rayner Fund, every last penny raised by clubs and supporters around the country will prove vital.