Children's charity receives backing of Olympian cyclist

Geraint Thomas becomes ambassador for Action Medical Research

Olympic gold medal-winning track cyclist Geraint Thomas has been announced as the face of Action Medical Research’s programme of cycling events.

Joining fellow Olympian Nicole Cooke, Thomas will lend his support to the charity’s fundraising cycling schedule through 2011, featuring 28 rides covering the length and breadth of the UK. These include the UK 100 Series of 22 one-day regional rides, UK End 2 End where cyclists take on the iconic Lands End to John O’Groats ride in just nine days and RIDE24, the 24-hour team relay race.

Action Medical Research also runs the biggest London to Paris ride in the charity sector. In the last ten years this one event has raised more than £4.6 million, with last year’s riders being the first to raise more than £1 million in a single year.

Geraint Thomas said: “We take it for granted that most children will learn to ride a bike one day, however that is not the case. Action Medical Research funds vital research to help children affected by disease and disabilities, who struggle with everyday life. I attended the charity’s Champions of Cycle Sport Dinner last November and saw for myself just how important their fundraising is. I am really proud to be able to help them in this way.”

Thomas, who will be competed in the UCI Track Cycling World Cup Classics in Manchester at the weekend, won Olympic gold in the team pursuit at 2008’s Beijing Games and rides for the professional Team Sky. In last year’s Tour de France he wore the white jersey for best young rider.

Money raised by the charity through its cycling programme helps fund vital medical research into conditions affecting babies and children. Research currently being supported by Action Medical Research includes work around premature birth, cerebral palsy, meningitis and epilepsy, as well as some very rare and distressing conditions that severely affect children.

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