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300 riders turn out to commemorate Kris Cook

Big show of support for friends & family of rider who died in RideLondon sportive

An estimated 300 riders turned out at Newlands Corner, Surrey yesterday to remember Kris Cook, the cyclist from Woking who died of a heart attack during last weekend's RideLondon Surrey 100 sportive.

Led by Kris’s girlfriend, Nicola Tait, the group rode to the top of Newlands hill, with the road closed by police to allow the ride to take place unhindered, reports

Afterwards Nicola Tait said: “I’d just like to say thank you to everyone who came today to help me up and pay my last respects to Kris.”

Kris Cook had originally aimed to raise £500 for Woking Hospice. The total on his Just Giving page now stands at over £42,000.

Nigel Harding, chief executive of Woking and Sam Beare Hospices said: “It's an absolutely amazing turn out in support of Nicola and Kris’s family and in remembrance of such a tragic event.

“There has got to be about 300 cyclists.

“I expected anything from 20 to 200, but not this many.

“The police have been absolutely brilliant in supporting everyone in this sad event.”

As well as Kris Cook's friends, participants included riders who felt they should show their support and solidarity.

One of them, Will Hodson, from Tooting, said: “It's awesome seeing everyone pulling together.

“I didn’t know Kris but I just had to take part.

“The cycling community is very friendly as it is but this just proves the best of it.

“I’ve never been part of something that is the result of a viral campaign before and to see the fundraising page go up has been amazing.

“It's just made me think that if something happened to me or one of my friends I would want the same thing to happen.”

John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for Along with founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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