Riders go the distance for Ryan

Ride for Ryan
Ride for Ryan

Cyclists will be saddling up to take part in a long distance ride for the Ryan Smith Foundation.

Cyclists will be saddling up to take part in a long distance ride for the Ryan Smith Foundation.

Next month’s fundraiser has been inspired by Chapel St Leonards teenager Ryan, who suffered severe brain injuries following a collision with a van while cycling to work.

Riding for Ryan, on Saturday, September 12, has been organised by Fantasy Island, which is supporting the foundation throughout the year.

Riders will follow a 50km or 100km route, starting and finishing at the Ingoldmells amusement park.

It is hoped to raise at least £2,500 for the foundation, with funds contributing towards the purchase of a specially adapted tandem cycle for Ryan and promote safe cycling.

In addition to the rides a number of fun cycle related activities will be taking place throughout the day at Fantasy Island as part of a Bike Fest event.

The 50k route, which is suitable for beginners, will follow a circular route via Chapel, Halton Holegate and Croft. The 100k circuit will go through Spilsby, Horncastle, Friskney and Wainfleet.

Director of operations at Fantasy Island James Parker said: “The Ryan Smith Foundation is a great cause that all the staff really believe in.

“We have gone the extra mile with things done to support Ryan and this is something we would like to carry on for a long time.”

Ryan’s dad Mark set up the foundation to campaign for cycling safety and will be taking part in the 100km bike ride.

Mark said: “It is fantastic and very humbling to receive this support from such a huge venue.

“All the staff at Fantasy Island have treated Ryan like royalty all year.”

Entry costs £10.

To sign up for the ride visit https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/events/details/136100/Riding-for-Ryan

Ryan’s journey over the last two years:

Ryan was left with severe brain injuries following the a collision with a van while cycling to work two years ago.

He was not wearing a cycling helmet at the time of the accident and since then his family have been campaigning for cycle helmets to be compulsory.

It was feared the 18-year-old would not recover from his injuries, but he regained consciousness after spending 123 days in a coma.

Following nine months’ intensive rehabilitation at the Children’s Trust centre in Surrey, Ryan returned home to Chapel last September.

Since then, he has been steadily regaining his speech and mobility and attends St Francis School in Lincoln.