Event also aims to raise money for Olympic legacy project at young cyclist's former school...

A charity ride will be held in Devon next Sunday in memory of Junior Heffernan, the 23-year-old Herbalife Leisure Lakes rider who died when he collided with a car during the Severn Bridge Road Race on Sunday 3 March.

The ride will start and finish in his home town of Yelverton and will be in aid of the Junior Heffernan Memorial Appeal, which itself supports the Kelly Olympic Legacy Pool Project at the young rider’s former school.

His parents, Denise and Bernard, asked that a page be set up for the appeal on the Charity Choice website, which says “they know that Junior would like to be remembered by supporting the Kelly Olympic Legacy Pool Project appeal.”

It adds: “They are proud to be associated with it as this will in turn give many more promising young athletes the opportunity to develop their talents and enjoy the aspirations and dreams that he had already begun to fulfill.”

The director of swimming at Kelly College, Robin Brew, said: “Junior was a young man with an extraordinary gift and capacity for hard work. He was extremely kind hearted and his willingness to be generous with both his time and support to others is a true testament to his wonderful character.

“His parents have been a huge support to him and shared his love of performance sport. Junior’s time with us in the Swim Squad from 2004-2006 will always be remembered.

“He excelled at Kelly in both his academic studies and in the sport of Triathlon. He gained 9 A* grades at GCSE level and a year later competed at the Junior European Triathlon Championships.

“It was clear that Junior had a gift for cycling and went on to develop his interests and talent further. He was highly regarded in the cycling world and was quickly becoming a prospect for a professional contract.

“We will remember forever, Junior's steely determination and his wonderful personality; so many things to be proud of and so much to be thankful for… but so sad a life full of opportunity cut short.”

Sunday’s ride will begin at 10am at Yelverton roundabout car park, pass the Heffernan family home, then complete at least one loop of Burrator reservoir before returning to Yelverton where it will finish at the Burrator Inn.

Friends and family will take part in the ride, but it is open to all cyclists, regardless of ability.

Meanwhile, donations may be made to the Junior Heffernan Memorial Appeal through the Charity Choice website, where more than £1,200 of a target of £2,500 has so far been raised.


Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.