News – Dave Rayner Fund Riders


20 years since Dave Rayner passed away, the riders for 2015 funded by his legacy are announced

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News – Dave Rayner Fund Riders

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November 2014 marked 20 years since Dave Rayner passed away. Since then his name and memory has been kept alive by the very existence of the organisation that bears his name, The Dave Rayner Fund. The Fund was established in 1995 in order to help young riders go abroad to live and race, just as Dave had done.

Since then more than 340 season long funding packages have been offered to over 150 different riders. The requirements are simple: under 23 category and willing and able to live and race abroad for a full season, with enough ability to obtain results, and enough desire to continually improve.

Some of those riders have gone on to be household names in the international cycling world: David Millar, Charly Wegelius, Matt Brammeier, Ian Stannard, Dan Martin, Josh Edmondson, Adam Yates and this seasons graduate, Dan McLay. Others are big names now on the UK scene: Russ Downing, Yanto Barker, Tom Barras, David Clarke, Graham Briggs, Peter Williams, Tobyn Horton, Jonathan McEvoy ….

The most successful female riders that have represented the Fund are Nikki Harris, now a big name in cyclo cross and Olympic and World Champion Dani King.

Yet others have made a name for themselves post cycling career: Tom Southam – award winning author and journalist and now Director Sportif, Daniel Lloyd – TV commentator, Ryan Bonser – Mechanic for Team Sky ProCycling

For the 2015 season 31 riders have been offered funding to assist them in achieving their goals:


Jessie Walker, one of the riders funded for 2015

31 riders offered funding
7 have been funded before
No-one has been previously funded for more than 1 year
26 male riders
5 female riders
3 riders have been offered 3 months summer funding as they are still in education
All riders are under 23 (with one exception)

It is a very young group representing a fresh start for 2015


Tao Geoghegan Hart

— Scott Auld a first year U23 from Stockton on Tees who is riding for the Zappis Team in Italy
— Tom Bracegirdle from Lymm also a first timer who goes to Team Handi-Ness in Belgium
— Christopher Dredge is from Milton Keynes but is studying at the University of Sheffield. He is going to Belgium after his finals and has agreed terms with CT 2020 to rider for them from June onwards
— Callum Ferguson is from Bromsgrove and will be riding for Zappis Racing Team in Italy
— Dan Gardner is a first year U23 from Haywards Heath and will be heading to the USA to join Continental Team Astellas
— Tao Geoghegan Hart was supported by the Fund last year in his first U23 season. He remains with the team of Axel Merckx which is now known as Axeon Cycling Team and operates from the USA
— Duncan Heywood is a first year from Redruth. He heads to Belgium to ride with Team Handi-Ness
— Owen James is from Carmarthen and joins Zappis Racing Team and heads to Italy
— Taylor Johnstone is a first time funded rider from London and heads to Belgium to ride for CC Tomacc
— Joseph Kirkham from Derby was supported by the Fund last year and goes back again to his team Briquebec Cotentin in Normandy, France
— Andy Leigh from Manchester is another who was supported last year and goes again to Team Handi-Ness
— Adam Lewis from Willenhall goes for the second year to Belgium this time to ride for CT2020
— Melissa Lowther from Leeds is a first year senior and goes to Belgium to ride for Matrix ProCycling
— Leon Mazzone is from the Isle of Man. He follows in his brother Tom’s wheeltracks and heads to Belgium where he will ride for Illi Bikes Cycling Team
— Eoin McCarthy from Fermoy was supported by the Fund last year. He had a great year and has stepped up to join the An Post – Chain Reaction Cycles Continental Team which is based in Belgium.
— Matthew Nowell is from Northwich but studies at Sheffield University. He will head to Belgium during the summer break
— Harriet Owen is from Kirtlington near Oxford and is another one of our first timers who heads to Belgium to race with Matrix ProCycling
— Ricky Parsons is from Taunton and goes to Belgium to ride for Handi-Ness Team
— Dan Pearson is from Bridgend and although a third year U23 this will be the first time he has been supported by the Fund. After racing with Zappis Racing Team in Italy last year he has been spotted by ASD Zalf Desiree Fior based in Treviso
— Penny Rowson from Sheffield will go to Belgium where she will be riding for Matrix ProCycling
— Jack Sadler from Ulverston is a second year U23 and goes to Belgium to ride for Continental Team 3M
— Jacob Scott from Holmfirth is a second year U23 and goes to Illi Bikes Cycling Team in Belgium
— James Shaw from Heanor is a first year, first time supported rider and goes to Belgium to ride for Lotto-Soudal U23


James Shaw

— Alistair Slater from Bourne was supported last year in France and this year goes to Belgium to ride for An Post Chain Reaction Cycles Team
— Daniel Stewart from Belfast is going to Hennebont Cyclisme in Brittany, France
— Matthew Teggart is from Banbridge and is heading to France to race for AC Bisontine
— Julian Varley from Harrogate is another rider who is in education and will head to Europe during his summer break
— Jessie Walker is from Sheffield and will be riding for the Matrix ProCycling in Belgium this year
— Molly Weaver is from Wigmore in Herefordshire and goes to Belgium with Matrix ProCycling
— Dan Whelan is from Warrington and was one of our supported riders last year. He goes back to Asfra RT in Belgium
— Jake Womersley is from Mirfield and is another first time funded rider to join Illi Bikes Cycling Team in Belgium

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