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British riders sweep cycling medals at World Transplant Games

Four livers + a heart + bone marrow + seven kidneys = 19 medals

Four livers, a heart, bone marrow and seven kidneys. It’s not an offal order at the butcher’s; those are the transplants received by the members of the British Transplant Cycling Team who have swept the medals at the World Transplant Games in Durban South Africa.

Between them, team members landed nine gold medals, three silver and seven bronze in the 5km time trial and 20km road race events.

The medal haul looks like this:


Richard Smith, Men 40-49 road race & time trial
Ottilie Quince, Women 30-39 road race & time trial
Diana Higman, Women 40-49 road race
Fidelma Hodkinson, Women 50-59 road race & time trial
Melissa Slaney, Women 40-49 time trial
Elizabeth Morris, 15-17 Women time trial


Melissa Slaney, Women 40-49 road race
Gavin Giles, Men 30-39 time trial
Diana Higman, Women 50-59 time trial


Robert Jolliffe, Men 60-69 road race & time trial
Zoe Dixon, Women 40-49 road race & time trial
Gerald Brown, Men 50-59 time trial
Simon Ripley, Men 18-29 road race & time trial

Custom kit

Team members are largely self-funded but have been supported by medical company Therakos, Cycling Plus magazine and clothing company Pro Vision.

Jason Edwards, sales manager and designer at Pro Vision, said: "We were really intrigued by the stories of the cycling team, having met [team captain] Richard Smith and some of his colleagues.

"They are a real inspiration and we just wanted to get involved.”

Pro Vision was founded by the original Manx sprinter, Steve Joughin, a top British pro in the 80s, when he was known as the Pocket Rocket.

Mr Edwards explained that all the kit Pro Vision supplied for the team had been custom made for each rider.

Image ©

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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Simon E | 10 years ago

Rich Smith is a Shropshire lad, competes in TTs and road racing (and maybe 'cross?). He also runs a popular sportive-style event. He and his mates at Mamil Cycling do a lot to support grassroots cycling in the area and Rich has now written a book about his liver transplant and subsequent success in the sport.

shaun finnis | 10 years ago

See how wonderful cycling is these people have a goal on life and they congratulations go to all of the above.

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