• Julian Post

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Some think Poots is the greatest cycling talent amongst the 2014 Curistas and was desperately unlucky to go down with a chest infection at the end of Day 3. He is tipped by some (well, one) to take the King of the Mountains cap at Le Cure 2015.

    Toughest Moment:

    The cycle from Briancon to Serre Chevalier.

    Top Tip

    Learn to embrace misery.

    Donate to Julian Post
  • Paddy Kerr

    Le Cure Highlight:

    The dawning realisation that Ventoux was surmountable; and the beers on Alp d’Huez!

    Toughest Moment:

    The dawning realisation that Ventoux was surmountable; and the beers on Alp d’Huez!

    Top Tip

    Keep the water bottles full during the day. Keep the pint glasses full at night.

    Donate to Paddy Kerr
  • Alex Bridges

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Reaching the top of the one of the many cols, digging in to some much needed food and water and witnessing the entire group of Curistas cheer the last remaining riders to join us all. Beautiful moment amongst stunning scenery, complete with golden eagle circling above. Or, was it simply gunning down to Val d’sere after a monstrous climb of the Col d’Iseran. There are so many.

    Toughest Moment:

    Walking to and mounting bike on the morning of day two.

    Top Tip

    Have faith. You tend to get stronger as the days progress.

    Donate to Alex Bridges
  • Derek McMenamin

    Cycling Experience:

    Main bits are Lands End to John o' Groats, Calais to the Med and La Route des Grand Alpes (Morzine to Monton near Nice).

    Biggest Fear:

    Keeping up with the rest of you; and going downhill!

    Reason For Doing This:

    Supporting my wife Debbie (also riding) who has conquered breast cancer with Professor Smith's help.

    Donate to Derek McMenamin
  • Chris Richard

    Cycling Experience:

    I can do bunny hops, wheelies, and endos. I have a Cycle Proficiency certificate. And I rode a Boris bike to and back from the Olympic Stadium to South Ken four years ago, about 18 miles round trip on what felt like a skip with wheels.

    Biggest Fear:

    Walking properly ever again afterwards.

    Reason For Doing This:

    For what is a great cause; and to race George Long up some hills after he persuaded me to join in. Hang on a second, George, where are you? Oh, you've chickened out this year!

    Donate to Chris Richard
  • Jon Worsfold

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Taking on all 3 summits (Telegraphe, Galibier and Alpe d'Huez) and climbing 4,000m on the last day - punishing yet beautiful - and that first beer on top of Alpe d'Huez!

    Toughest Moment:

    Many, but probably at the foot of d'Huez knowing 13km and 21 switchbacks to go before the pub.

    Top Tip

    Cycling challenge, scenery, camaraderie, but most of all, a very important and worthwhile cause to do your bit.

    Donate to Jon Worsfold
  • Derrick Dale

    Cycling Experience:

    Severe collar bone breakage when first attempted mountain biking 6 years ago in the USA. Three operations cut short - or rather postponed- a brilliant middle life crisis cycling career.

    Biggest Fear:

    That the drink runs dry.

    Reason For Doing This:

    Marianne, Marianne, Marianne. It's pay-back time. When Marianne was diagnosed, I was supposed to be leading her in a case the next week and she still offered to help with the case!

    Donate to Derrick Dale
  • Henry Majed

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Wow, so many… The ‘Curista’ Spirit takes some topping, even on the ‘hilly’ bits (Chapeau, Team Elite!); Gibbo’s parents’ cheery smiles and never-ending jelly babies; Big Dave and the gang riding back down Alpe D’Huez to give me a rousing, last-rider entourage, to the finish; The Ride of the Day Yellow Cap was pretty special too!

    Toughest Moment:

    Col de l'Iseran raised some philosophical questions, relating to bicycles and mountains. And that final ascent up Alpe D’Huez had me digging deep, while my lungs were trying to escape through my ears. The answer to my question though… ‘Yes, absolutely, 100%’.

    Top Tip

    Ride at your own pace, look up and keep smiling. You’re doing something amazing.

    Donate to Henry Majed
  • Marianne Butler

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Top of Col de I'Iseran - no question.

    Toughest Moment:

    About 3 km from the Col de I'Iseran. It is just so mean.

    Top Tip

    Have a jelly baby in your mouth at all times and a sip of water every few mins. And some good anthems. Simples.

    Donate to Marianne Butler
  • Nick Ransley

    Cycling Experience:

    Almost none - just completed my first proper ride. It was awful and I was delighted when it was over.

    Biggest Fear:

    Anything over 6% (and that's 100kg of concern); finishing in the dark.

    Reason For Doing This:

    Reducing risk for my immediate gene pool together with an abiding love of boobs and some of the people attached to them.

    Donate to Nick Ransley
  • Leah Walland

    Cycling Experience:

    Above average: Etape du Tour 2014 & 2013 (top 30 female), 11hr Ironman (Vichy 2015), GB Age Group Triathlete (numerous appearances)...

    Biggest Fear:

    Not much scares me. My biggest "fear" is probably ending up with those unsightly cyclist tan lines (I have been known to cycle in a boob tube. Yes that did happen.)

    Reason For Doing This:

    There have been too many times already in my life where I desperately wished I could smash cancer in the face. I am excited to to be part of a (two-wheeled) movement that is working to help other people get the second chance that cancer does not always allow us to enjoy. And I do love a challenge....

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Every time I saw our amazing support team (especially if it meant it was lunch time or I could top up my Haribo supplies).

    Toughest Moment:

    Dancing in the pedals for the duration of Alpe d’Huez…. needless to say I have adapted my gear ratios for this year, my quads are already thanking me.

    Top Tip

    Talking. Not only does it make the time fly by (for me at least, debatable for my ride companions) but it keeps you nicely in the aerobic zone which means the nasty lactic acid is kept at bay and the legs are ever so slightly less achy the following day(s)…

    Donate to Leah Walland
  • Mark Bertram

    Cycling Experience:

    A Sunday spinner but have had two eventful bike trips to the Alps and another to the Pyrenees.

    Biggest Fear:

    Missing out!

    Reason For Doing This:

    I will take any excuse to be in the mountains but this one clearly has something very special about it.

    Donate to Mark Bertram
  • Mike Harley

    Cycling Experience:

    Fred Whitton, Tour de Yorkshire and a few other sportives. Ironman Switzerland 2015. Regular London commuter and once ended up on the bonnet of a Ferrari (the bike was fine).

    Biggest Fear:

    Having to walk...

    Reason For Doing This:

    Have dreamt of doing the big Tour de France climbs for years and never had the chance. (And a great cause, obviously).


  • Stewart Robertson

    Cycling Experience:

    Used to ride my bike when I delivered newspapers growing up in Toronto 40 years ago. Not much since.

    Biggest Fear:

    Being the last rider in each day.

    Reason For Doing This:

    I love the mountains and the challenge and it is a great cause with a fun group.

    Donate to Stewart Robertson
  • Kelsey Skinner

    Le Cure Highlight:

    The descents, any of them, and that beautiful ride through the gorge on the “optional” extra 40km on Day 2, 2014. And on Day 3 there was a brief period when I was cycling stronger than Tony Butler. That didn’t last.

    Toughest Moment:

    Col d’Izoard was least famous and freakin hardest, a killer reminder about underestimating things…

    Top Tip

    There must be easier ways to raise money. Just kidding (maybe). Train hard and remember it’s for a great cause with good friends!

    Donate to Kelsey Skinner
  • Michael Tomlins

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Getting to the top of Col d’Izoard with more Haribo in my blood than red blood cells….

    Toughest Moment:

    Discovering on day 2 that there would not be a three course sit down meal each day for lunch.

    Top Tip

    The back of the peloton is where the cool kidz are!

    Donate to Michael Tomlins
  • Justin Anderson

    Cycling Experience:

    Mostly recreational with a few long rides through the Colorado Rockies.

    Biggest Fear:

    I’ve never ridden a bike in France. I hope it everything works the same.

    Reason For Doing This:

    To support cancer research and force myself to get out on the bike.

    Donate to Justin Anderson
  • Bethan Halls

    Cycling Experience:

    Seasoned London commuter. Lycra clad, Alpine-climbing novice (bar an Etape and a chilly, solo cycle to a wedding in the Swiss Alps the summer they re-opened Verbier).

    Biggest Fear:

    Getting lost and/or cycling off the edge of a mountain. (Girl-nav is atrocious, so both are quite likely).

    Reason For Doing This:

    Cycling and fundraising FOMO.

    Donate to Bethan Halls
  • Kevin Cozens

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Reaching the top of Col de l’Iseran.

    Toughest Moment:

    Getting to the top of Col de l’Iseran.

    Top Tip

    It’s not a race, don’t be afraid to take a break… and maybe change your rear cassette to an easier gear ratio.

    Donate to Kevin Cozens
  • John Larpent

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Many highlights but reaching top of Alpe D'Huez on the last day and the camaraderie throughout all four days got me through it!

    Toughest Moment:

    Alps D'Huez climb and thinking I was a gonna when my rear wheel hit a rock on one of the descents.

    Top Tip

    When it gets really tough keep spinning the wheels but make sure to lift your head up and take in the views - hell of a distraction from the pain!

    Donate to John Larpent
  • Mark Harrison

    Le Cure Highlight:

    There are so many……but probably getting to the top of Alp d’huez and drinking a cold beer (hence the smile on my face!)

    Toughest Moment:

    The massage table the night before the final day (seriously it was agony!). Marginally worse than the final 2km of the ascent of the Colombiere!

    Top Tip

    Suck it up and enjoy….

    Donate to Mark Harrison
  • Neil Grover

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Getting to the top of Alpe D’Huez after conquering Col de Telegraph and Galibier and realising I was a “dead man walking.”

    Toughest Moment:

    Getting to the top of Alpe D’Huez ……no falling off, over the edge going up Galibier. Fortunately I remained “clipped in” and “the Prof” pulled my bike up, with me still attached, to sanctuary.

    Top Tip

    Raise lots and lots of money and don’t follow Peter F’s directions they elongate things quite a bit!

    Donate to Neil Grover
  • Andrew Latham

    Cycling Experience:

    I’m a sucker for rides and runs. Ride to Conquer Cancer, Ride London, Artemis Highland, RAAM, various marathons and so on.

    Biggest Fear:

    Will my back hold out?

    Reason For Doing This:

    My mum died of breast cancer, maybe that doesn’t have to happen so much. And holding back my dementia, I forgot the other reasons.

    Donate to Andrew Latham
  • Scott Reynolds

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Support, camaraderie and general all round banter from fellow Curistas.

    Toughest Moment:

    Finding the energy to fix puncture number 4 on the second day’s ride.

    Top Tip

    Get your head down and grind it out.

    Donate to Scott Reynolds
  • Matt Goode

    Le Cure Highlight:

    I am supposed to say the camaraderie here right?! Whilst the camaraderie was very special I guess it says something about me that my top highlight was definitely winning the real race to the top of Col d’Izoard having broken away from the Gowar-Goode-Gowar peloton. That and beating Skinner to the pub at end end of Day 1, despite, ahem, a healthy weight handicap. The beers at the top of Alpe d’Huez were pretty special too.

    Toughest Moment:

    Missing the plane!

    Top Tip

    Leave plenty of time to get from SW11 to Heathrow ahead of your flight! That and scaring yourself early in the training programme by going up some steep hills with people who have trained far more than you!

    Donate to Matt Goode
  • Maggie Paxton

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Reaching the top of the Madeleine and having a giant ham and cheese sandwich shoved in my mouth by Helena Peacock.

    Toughest Moment:

    Not so much a 'moment' but the long night of trying (and failing) to vomit quietly whilst sharing a room with long suffering Hannah Durden. This 'issue' stopped me doing the final Alpe d'Huez climb of the trip but luckily a couple of wonderful Curistas, Gary Fearn and Alex Busby, went back down and did it with me the following morning when my insides had (finally) stopped throwing a hissy fit.

    Top Tip

    Buy a Garmin, it helps to know how much further you have to go up the mountain; especially when you can't actually see the top of it.

    Donate to Maggie Paxton
  • Simon Oakes

    Le Cure Highlight:

    The huge descent off Col d'Iseran into Val d'isere. Amazing views into a sunny valley and 20km of empty road.

    Toughest Moment:

    Trying not to scream during a brutal sports massage from a Swedish lady. And the last 500m of the Col d'Iseran - the closest I've been to walking since actually walking up Barhatch lane 5 years ago.

    Top Tip

    Wear sunscreen.

    Donate to Simon Oakes
  • Richard Tite

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Having survived the first 3 days, the feeling of confidence that I could "take down" Alpe d'Huez.

    Toughest Moment:

    30 seconds into Alpe d'Huez realizing I was a deeply deluded individual.

    Top Tip

    Lose weight - physics always wins.

    Donate to Richard Tite
  • Ben Manners

    Cycling Experience:

    Ex-regular commuter, very occasional sportive and some "smell the flowers" cycle touring. Cycled coast-to-coast across Southern Africa in 2011 (which was enough cycling for a lifetime).

    Biggest Fear:

    Repeating my careless habit of coming off bicycles and breaking bones. Or being asked to speak French.

    Reason For Doing This:

    I want to raise funds to help fight cancer, I've always wanted to join Le Cure, and always wanted to cycle the Alps.

    Donate to Ben Manners
  • Hannah Fishpool

    Cycling Experience:

    Very experienced at getting calves covered in bike oil. First time this April I discovered my mountain legs in Andalusia. A few triathlons and velodrome sessions.

    Biggest Fear:

    Getting overtaken on the mountain by a small child.

    Reason For Doing This:

    A fantastic mix of fun and pain with les Curistas for a brilliant cause. My best pal Roz's little brother Simon had lots of care from the Royal Marsden and we’re really glad to fundraise together and support much-needed research.

    Donate to Hannah Fishpool
  • James Sullivan

    Le Cure Highlight:

    40 metres from the top of the Izoard. Sunshine. Hairpins. Food tables.

    Toughest Moment:

    The Galibier. What’s with the lack of air? How are you supposed to get your jam sandwiches down when you can’t breathe at 2600 metres? Oh, and I couldn’t feel my hands, arms or feet on the way down. Not ideal for braking.

    Top Tip

    Flapjacks. Iced donuts. Tough call which. On balance, go flapjacks.

    Donate to James Sullivan
  • Roz Johnson

    Cycling Experience:

    Had a lovely road bike since 2012...sadly it rarely sees the light of day. Enjoy occasional scoots to Richmond Park and down to the Surrey Hills when its sunny....and just about to brave using some cleats!

    Biggest Fear:

    Turning up with all the wrong gear and being laughed off the mountain ;-) I can cope with running far, but cycling is still new to me...I'll be slowly going backwards down the mountain, and wobbling off my bike into the road!

    Reason For Doing This:

    My family has had first hand experience of The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity so it is close to my heart. When I heard about the ride it seemed like a perfect combination of a great cause and a physical challenge.

    Donate to Roz Johnson
  • Ben Hodgson

    Cycling Experience:

    Not touched a bike since 2009.

    Biggest Fear:

    Being overtaken on the final bend of Alpe d'Huez by a sweaty Welshman.

    Reason For Doing This:

    To enjoy the roads of Europe before we need a visa to use them. And to stomp on cancer, obviously.

    Donate to Ben Hodgson
  • Aidan Bailey

    Cycling Experience:

    Experienced London commuter cyclist and annual Norfolk Superhero quadrathlon competitor but yet to find the Surrey Hills.

    Biggest Fear:

    Dry lips - this might show my naivety.

    Reason For Doing This:

    Raising money for this fantastic ground breaking charity.

    Donate to Aidan Bailey
  • Peter Jensen

    Le Cure Highlight:

    All the downhill bits! Every time a car drove past honking and waving.

    Toughest Moment:

    All the uphill bits!

    Top Tip

    Have some motivating music ready on the ipod to blast to when it gets tough on the endless uphill sections. Don't forget your headphones - but only plug into one ear. You need your wits about you when those motorbikes come flying past.

    Donate to Peter Jensen
  • Debbie McMenamin

    Le Cure Highlight:

    The Prof's inspirational talk on Day 3 confirming categorically that breast cancer treatment is getting better because of Le Cure.

    Toughest Moment:

    Discovering I was 100m short of Everest on the final night and having to go back up Alpe d'Huez in the morning as everyone else was descending!

    Top Tip

    Bring plenty of cash for Paddy's relentless fines !

    Donate to Debbie McMenamin
  • Louise Malone

    Cycling Experience:

    Does commuting to work on a Santander bike count?

    Biggest Fear:

    It was being last up the big hills but having read some of the veteran's bio's it is now cycling up said big hills with no oxygen. Fun!

    Reason For Doing This:

    To become unemployed! I'm a physio who works to help people overcome the disabling side effects of cancer and its treatment but would rather we cure cancer.

    Donate to Louise Malone
  • Joel Levack

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Deciding with a couple of other Curistas not to take the option of a lift to shorten Day 4, and instead getting up early, missing breakfast and taking on all 4000 metres of climbing.

    Toughest Moment:

    The final 3km of Col du Colombier.

    Top Tip

    If it's your first Le Cure whatever you do to try and prevent it you'll properly feel pretty anxious just before the first day. Rest assured it all gets easier from there on in and you'll be riding with a lovely bunch of people.

    Donate to Joel Levack
  • Peter Hooper

    Cycling Experience:

    RAB 2015. Alps, Pyrenees, Corsica and France north to south.

    Biggest Fear:

    Being the first rider in as something will have gone very wrong.

    Reason For Doing This:

    Nothing better than a few days cycling in the mountains but actually to support the incredible doctors, nurses, support staff and researchers at the Royal Marsden who have never ceased to push forward and treat everyone with dignity and grace.

    Donate to Peter Hooper
  • Kate Pearson

    Cycling Experience:

    A few 50 mile sportives (sadly the Arc de Triomphe was just a cardboard cut out at the end of one them).

    Biggest Fear:

    My right knee giving up and having to spend most of the time on the bus.

    Reason For Doing This:

    It's a great cause; Manny made it sound doable; I am up for trying most things; I love the mountains (although generally to look at); there was a spare space; I have 3 weeks to train (!) and will walk if I have to.

    Donate to Kate Pearson
  • Lisa Kallal

    Cycling Experience:

    Venturing out on the London streets to get to work and back. Will need to get myself used to road bike, mostly ride on single-speed, fixed.

    Biggest Fear:

    Being passed by Joy Skipper on the hills. Not being in time for beer.

    Reason For Doing This:

    I believe in a cancer-free world of the future. I love a challenge.

    Donate to Lisa Kallal
  • Gary Fearn

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Gary started his training for Le Cure 2014 borderline ‘clinically obese’ according to all objective and medically valid calculation methods. At 88kg and just over 5 foot he knew getting up the French montagnes de classiques would be a tall order. Armed with a set of insulting electronic scales and his “Eat Less Stuff Do More Things”TM daily and cumulative weight tracking Excel spreadsheet he spent the next 65 days hardly drinking beer and hardly eating anything fun. Thankfully, it all paid off and he embarked (with much less Gary hanging around) on the best challenge of his life: Le Cure. A challenge which he actually almost completed…

    Toughest Moment:

    Getting ill and having to sit out Day 4 in 2014.

    Top Tip

    This year, Gary pledges to complete every sodding last kilometre again. This year, he will conquer every damn mountain again.

    Donate to Gary Fearn
  • Dash Munding

    Cycling Experience:

    Mum says I can take the training wheels off soon.

    Biggest Fear:

    Brake failure on a steep curve making me fall over a 200ft cliff.

    Reason For Doing This:

    My brother-in-law died of stomach cancer aged 28, my sister (his wife) was diagnosed with a brain tumour 9 months after he died. Cancer is merciless and unrelenting, and so must we be.

    Donate to Dash Munding
  • Jon Broddle

    Cycling Experience:

    Enough to know to take the longer route to avoid hills.

    Biggest Fear:

    Smelly cheeses.

    Reason For Doing This:

    A cause I'm keen to support, fun, the great outdoors.

    Donate to Jon Broddle
  • Claire Stevens

    Le Cure Highlight:

    To name a few… zig zagging up Les Lacets de Montvernier (and realising it was achievable, despite how crazy it looks); reaching the top of Alpe d’Huez; the general sense of amazing comradery throughout; well-earned beers at cafes on town squares at the end of the day…

    Toughest Moment:

    The Col du Glandon in general

    Top Tip

    Do as much training as you can – and always cycle with a smile on your face!

    Donate to Claire Stevens
  • Joy Skipper

    Cycling Experience:

    LEJOG, Bangkok to Singapore and The Chiltern Hills.

    Biggest Fear:

    That I will be doing a lot of walking up hills with a bike!

    Reason For Doing This:

    I'm not very good at saying NO.

    Donate to Joy Skipper
  • Akhil Shah

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Summiting the Glandon and being able to enjoy the views!

    Toughest Moment:

    Struggling for oxygen on the final stages of Col de L’ Iseran and not following Ray Cox’s descent.

    Top Tip

    Train wisely in preparation for some long days of climbing, and try to enjoy the Galbier.

    Donate to Akhil Shah
  • Tony Butler

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Seeing David Sanderson cycle into a ditch.

    Toughest Moment:

    Not following David into said ditch, I was laughing so much.

    Top Tip

    Lager and chocolate milk do not mix.

    Donate to Tony Butler
  • Isobel Ewart

    Cycling Experience:

    Cycled to school and back every day for 14 years but that’s quite a long time ago now... I’d always thought cycling was more a mode of transport than a sport so getting on a road bike and cycling more than a mile has been quite a shock!

    Biggest Fear:

    That muscle memory doesn't stretch back 20 years…

    Reason For Doing This:

    It's an excellent cause, I wanted to join in as soon as I first heard about it. And I’m up for a challenge!

    Le Cure Highlight:

    The top of every mountain and the thrill of the downhill. And the camaraderie all day long of course!

    Toughest Moment:

    Everything hurting on Alp d’Huez.

    Top Tip

    When it gets tough, relax, enjoy the views and think of the cause. And eat lots!

    Donate to Isobel Ewart
  • Simon Skinner

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Riding in the peloton through the towns at the start of Day 1.

    Toughest Moment:

    Bonking before lunch on the second day.

    Top Tip

    Bring some long fingered gloves and additional layers for the descents!

    Donate to Simon Skinner
  • Ed Cowburn

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Going really fast down massive mountains.

    Toughest Moment:

    Col de la Madeleine. Relentless.

    Top Tip

    Ride your bike as much as possible before your get to the Alps. If you can't find hills then just doing hours on flatter roads will get you ready for the endurance.

    Donate to Ed Cowburn
  • Mark Shearer

    Le Cure Highlight:

    Alp D’Huez’s last turn.

    Toughest Moment:

    Sitting on the saddle on Day 4 having not used any chamois cream!

    Top Tip

    Don’t believe a thing Paddy K tells you about his lack of training. And don’t judge a man who rocks up on a commuter bike.

    Donate to Mark Shearer
  • Ian Smith

    Le Cure Highlight:

    2014 was one big never-ending highlight, from the square in Carpentras to the top of Alpe d’Huez.

    Toughest Moment:

    Easy – going back to work.

    Top Tip

    For the more senior members of the team, a Voltarol each night (Peter will confirm).

    Donate to Ian Smith
  • Simon Pepperdine

    Le Cure Highlight:

    A moment from one of our after dinner debriefs when Dave H declared he had found a new and alternative route featuring terrain we had not yet covered over the previous 3 days & 22 hours in the saddle….then someone chipped in “what, you mean flat ?”

    Toughest Moment:

    Those Swedes who gave me my first ‘sports massage’. That’s an altogether different level of pain.

    Top Tip

    Bring loads of arse cream and a decent saddle, preferably a small sofa (one of those with an ash tray and beer fridge in the arm rest).

    Donate to Simon Pepperdine