Posted in Cycle and tagged ride london
image of Nigel and Naomi

Nigel Moore and Naomi Riches MBE are two passionate cyclists who will be entering the 2015 Ride London-Surrey 100 on a tandem - #goodstuff. However it's not all about the joys of combined pedal power; the pair will also be working with a number of charities and cycling clubs to help raise awareness for the disabled and visually impaired. You can read about their preparations and adventures here on the Wiggle blog.

Words by Nigel Moore

An idea is born

In 2013 I bumped into Naomi at the Bucks Sports Awards in Aylesbury, I thanked her for the nutritional advice she had given me a couple of years before as it really had worked – I’d lost over 2 stone in weight! We then started to discuss new challenges for her now that she was retired from Rowing and I suggested cycling to her – along the lines of Rebecca Romero who’d transferred from Olympic Rowing Gold to cycling. We then thought a tandem would be a good idea!

Naomi has since managed to get out on a tandem at Marlow Riders, her local cycling club during 2014 and has secured the help of Steve Tolmie (Cytech 2 qualified). Steve has helped with the mechanics of the tandem she’s ridden as well as Piloting for her. With this in mind, I suggested that we team up to cycle Ride London on a Tandem – for some strange reason, given that I have never ridden a tandem, Naomi accepted! Clearly we were both after a challenge! I am just delighted to have such an athlete to ‘power’ the bike round the 100mile Ride London course.

Time to find a tandem

The key issue has been finding a suitable tandem. Fortunately I found Charlotte’s Tandems via Google. They are a national charity that offers people the opportunity to borrow a tandem for a couple of months at a time. We have now collected a ‘Globetrotter’ tandem which the charity has kindly loaned us for use over the winter.

Naomi shows off her London 2012 medal with Nigel

What has been a big surprise is the weight of the tandem – although Naomi and Steve have assured me it is lighter than the first one they used. Anyway the tandem is now with Naomi and Steve is going to look at servicing the bike to ensure it is in tip-top condition – especially the brakes!

Fundraising for Wheels For All charity

We’re clearly not doing Ride London just for our health, but feel we can contribute to raising awareness of how disabled people can get out and be active in inclusive sports, in this instance cycling. So far we’ve had support from Charlotte’s Tandems and we want to help promote their fantastic work, but we’ve also been in contact with British Cycling Federation and will contribute to its promotion of cycling for people with disabilities. This includes fundraising for another national charity, Wheels For All . This is a nationally recognised programme that embraces all children and adults with disabilities and differing needs to engage in high quality cycling activity.

In addition, Steve has been working on applying to Sport England to fund the purchase of 2 tandems for Marlow Riders; we feel it would be great to develop a cycling hub for people with disabilities in Marlow.

With all the above information coming to our attention we’re now looking to see how best we can support the development of cycling for people with disabilities. We feel we can contribute to this work through raising its profile or simply raising some much needed cash! A key part of all this planning will be writing our blog to chart our plans towards ultimately Riding London 100 in 2015 and that’s where Wiggle’s expertise and national reach across the cycling community will be so helpful.

We hope you’ll stay with us for ‘the fun of the ride’ over the coming months and contribute to our plans to raise both profile and funds!

Make a donation

If you would like to make a donation and support the Wheels For All charity, you can visit their Team Tandem donation page.

Wheels for All donation page