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  • Stella’s Ride London Journey 2024
  • Stella’s Ride London Journey 2024

    Go Stella! This was Stella’s second year Stella participating in the Ride London 30 mile event. This year Luca stepped up to be her Ride Buddy, and together they smashed it.

    We asked Stella to share with us how the day went.

    “Here I am again with a London Ride medal (this time it is made out of recycled zinc).

    I became a Bikeworks member in 2022, I had little confidence in cycling and started off on the upright trikes. Due to my disabilities I thought my balance issues would stop me from riding a 2 wheeler but with the support of the amazing All Ability instructors I was able to achieve my dream of riding a standard 2 wheeled cycle.

    A month before Ride London I started to panic as up until then I hadn’t done much training. I live in Enfield but work full time, so was only able to attend Bikeworks CIC LWS All Ability on alternative Saturdays and the occasional Bush Hill club.

    So I decided to rent a bike for a month from The Family Bike Club. Luke, from Family Bike Club, was very accommodating, they gave me a ruby bike which is my favourite colour (I have a ruby purse, ruby hat and ruby shopping trolley). They helped customise the bike by putting the bell on the right side as my left hand is totally paralysed.

    After a month I decided to buy the bike. I now commute to work on the bike twice a week on cycle lanes and through parks and cycle to the gym along the canals. Every time I go for a ride, I get very very excited, even when going to work!

    This year I wanted to use my own bike for Ride London, the question was logistically how was I going to get to the meeting point to meet my Bikeworks ‘Buddy’, as I forbid myself to ride in Central London on my own. I asked my son, Eric, to cycle the bike for me and, with some persuasion, he agreed. Eric fulfilled his part effectively and he even woke up without moaning!

    This year my ride ‘Buddy’ was Luca, which was great as I know Luca from the Bush Hill Park All Ability club and felt comfortable with him, as he knows how my disabilities can affect how I cycle.

    Ride London was enjoyable and stressful at the same time. Luca helped to remove the obstacles such as having other racers swiping me; he taught me how to change gears during the ride with hand-on-hand support, which I am eternally grateful for. He also oiled my chains and readjusted my bell, which helped my confidence. Luca was a role model in how a ‘Buddy’ should be.

    I would like to thank Bikeworks for giving me the skills and confidence to ride a bike and for giving me TWO brilliant buddies TWO years in a row to help me navigate the London Ride 30 event in 2023 and 2024. I would also like to thank the Family Bike Club for concentrating on my abilities, and not my disabilities. Last and definitely not the least, I would like to thank my family for having faith in me and to Eric in making my Big Day more special by his unwavering support.”