Darren Kirkbride from North Yorkshire is using his love of cycling to fundraise for Myeloma UK on behalf of his father-in-law who was diagnosed with myeloma in 2011.
When Darren’s father-in-law was diagnosed with myeloma in December 2011, it came as a shock, “As a family we had never heard or myeloma. We found the Myeloma UK website and the information was invaluable. It answered a lot of our questions.”
Within a couple of months of completing his first round of treatment, Darren’s father-in-law relapsed. Since then he has finished a round of Velcade. He is now treatment-free, stable and enjoying day to day activities.
Darren says it has been an emotional journey for his whole family so far, “Sometimes there is nothing I can do to make them feel any better, so taking part in this ride is my way of helping and offering my support.”
The 42 year old’s love of cycling came at a young age, “Cycling has been a massive part of my life. I competed in BMX racing from 8 years old and took on mountain bike downhill racing and cross country in my teens.”
Cycling from London to Paris is something Darren always wanted to do: “I feel this is the closest I’m going to get to the Tour de France. I thought this would be a real challenge for me personally, as I also go through periods of poor mental health and periods of depression. Riding my bike will be the easy part for me, the challenge will be my own mental health.”
“My training is coming along well, I am able to bike to work and that is a 34 mile round trip. On the weekends, I aim to do two long training sessions of approx. 50 miles each.”
Darren is looking forward to May, “I am feeling both excited and nervous and I am very much looking forward to it. I can’t wait to ride into Paris where my wife, my children and the rest of my family will be waiting for me.”
Sometimes there is nothing I can do to make them feel any better, so taking part in this ride is my way of helping and offering my support.” Darren Kirkbride
Places for this exclusive ride are limited.