Fifteen Warwick University graduates will reunite on 17th and 18th November to cycle 100 miles from London to Leamington Spa to raise money for Ovarian Cancer Action in support of their friend Emily McArthur who is currently fighting the disease.
Emily McArthur, 27, also a Warwick graduate and now a Warwick employee, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2006 when she was just 25. She completed a course of chemotherapy following diagnosis, but the cancer returned earlier this year. She is currently undergoing a second, more aggressive, course.
Emily is determined to raise awareness of cancer in young people and of ovarian cancer in particular. Often mistakenly referred to as the ‘silent killer’, there are in fact key symptoms which, once identified, can aid early detection of the illness.
She says “I feel extremely proud of everyone who is involved in the cycle, because not only are they raising money for such a good cause, but they are raising far more awareness of ovarian cancer than I could ever hope to on my own. As well as that, on a personal level it shows me how much support I have behind me and that makes going through chemotherapy much easier.”
The chosen route for the peloton will take them through the Chiltern Hills on day 1, a gruelling 60 miles into Buckingham where they will stop for the night to rest. Day 2 will take them the remaining 40 miles into Leamington where they will be greeted by their supporters. A chase vehicle will be following the team along the route to provide breakdown support and refreshment when required.
Emily’s husband Justin, who works in the Warwick Business School, comments; “As someone who hasn’t ridden a bike for 15 years, training for the Ldn2Leam has been gruelling. The prospect of riding 100 miles looks like really hard work, but it’s not a patch on how difficult the last two years have been for Emily and whenever I’m feeling exhausted, she is a fantastic inspiration.”
Emily is writing an online diary to share her experiences and keep her friends updated on her progress through chemotherapy. You can read Emily’s blog, find out more information about the cycle route and make a donation to Ovarian Cancer Action at www.100miles.org.uk.