Leeds ex-soldier to tackle 100-mile bicycle ride for military charity

1 April 2015 11:29

A former soldier is challenging himself to cycle 100 miles in an impressive 5 ½ hours in aid of Blind Veterans UK, the national charity for vision impaired ex-Service men and women.

Stan Darbyshire, 55, and living in Sheepscar, Leeds, will aim to set a personal record when he tackles the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 for a third time. He completed his first ride in 5 hours 50 minutes without breaks and is challenging himself to beat that time this year.

Stan says: "I decided to fundraise for Blind Veterans UK because they help both young veterans from today's conflicts, and older veterans who have lost their sight later in life."

Stan joined the British Army in 1976 and served for ten years in the Royal Engineers. He went on an operational tour to the Falklands Islands during the Falklands War, and also served in Canada, Kenya, Germany and Northern Ireland.

The first time he did RideLondon his official time was 6 hours 29 minutes because he slowed to wait for a friend. Last year he finished 86 miles in 4 hours 55 minutes after the organisers cut the distance due to bad weather.

He says: "Last year's event was a wet challenge, but I still loved every minute. Achieving 5 ½ hours for the full 100 miles may be a tough call, based on my recent average speeds, but luckily the London ride is fairly flat and fast."

Stan will prepare for his ride with a twelve-week training programme and a healthy diet.

Blind Veterans UK still has guaranteed places available for the Prudential Ride, which will take place on 2 August 2015. In return, the charity asks you to pay a registration fee of £49 and pledge to raise £500 in sponsorship. If you have secured a place for RideLondon through the ballot, Blind Veterans UK would love you to join their team and raise vital funds for the charity. All cyclists receive a free exclusive Blind Veterans UK cycling jersey to wear during the ride.

To sponsor Stan as he tackles the Prudential Ride London - Surrey 100 for Blind Veterans UK, please visit

To join our team or apply for a guaranteed place, please visit: