Mark Dempster

As a rather overweight desk bound IT guy, I took up cycling seriously six years ago to help me lose an excess of six and half stone. Since achieving this goal I set myself a cycling challenge each year to keep my focus and motivation whilst raising money.

This ride is about raising awareness and money for a charity called the Magic Breakfast I was surprised to hear that there are 3.9 million children living in income poverty in the UK and 32% of school children regularly miss breakfast. This means they often arrive at school too hungry to learn. So the Magic Breakfast works hard to provide free breakfasts for 6,000 children in 200 primary schools improving results and often turning children's lives around.

"One boy’s behaviour was so bad we were about to exclude him. Before I did, I thought, let’s just try asking him to breakfast club. It was magic – he settled. He was just hungry. So simple."
Randal Cremer Primary School, Hackney.

You may think of cycling as an individual activity but through these challenges I truly understand the power of working as a team. Your fellow riders can really get you through some difficult moments. I’m looking forward to riding this challenge with this new team and raising loads of money for the Magic Breakfast charity. So take a look at my Virgin Money Giving page and please give whatever you can for a great cause.

My list of previous challenges includes La Marmotte (a big Alps’ ride), a three week 1500 mile Portsmouth to Pompeii charity ride and a one week 2000 mile Hastings to Barcelona (and back) charity ride.