December 30 - Mark Cavendish (pictured), the most successful sprinter in Tour de France history, and Jon-Allan Butterworth, a triple Paralympic silver medallist, have pledged their support for the 2013 Hero Ride which is looking to raise money for wounded British war veterans.
The 2013 Hero Ride aims to raise £1 million ($1.5 million/€1.2 million) for the new Help for Heroes' cycling initiative which will see cyclists from all corners of the country meet in Blackheath on June 2.
The cyclists will ride together into central London led by the biggest cohort of wounded servicemen, women and veterans Britain has ever seen.
It is set bring thousands of people to the streets of London and pass some of its most iconic landmarks including the Cenotaph, Buckingham Palace and the Mall before culminating at the Horse Guards Parade.
"Hero Ride is a very special project to me because it engages the sport I love for a greater cause," said Cavendish.
"Get on your bike and set yourself a challenge – whether you ride 10, 100 or 1,000 miles - join Help for Heroes in London on June 2 for the grand finale."
For Butterworth, the initiative is particularly poignant.
He lost his left arm in 2007 in a rocket attack when serving with the Royal Air Force in Iraq before Help for Heroes introduced him to elite Paralympic cycling.
"Help for Heroes helped with my recovery and put me on the path to competitive cycling through the Battle Back Programme," said Butterworth.
"Before my injury, I fought for my country.
"Today, I represent Great Britain in cycling.
"Register for your Hero Ride and help others like me."
The initiative has also received high profile backing from Prime Minister David Cameron.
"It will be a truly fantastic sight to see thousands of cyclists come from all over the UK, riding to The Cenotaph, in support of our men and women of the Armed Forces," he said.
"I wish Help for Heroes every success in meeting their target of raising £1million ($1.5 million/€1.2 million), which will help continue the excellent work that is done to ensure our veterans get the support they need and deserve."
Hero Ride is an expansion of the Big Battlefield Bike Ride, which marked the launch of the charity in 2008.
To find out more about Hero Ride and to register click here.
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