A GROUP of cyclists have conquered a 220-mile challenge in aid of a Haverfordwest-based charity and gallery.

The VCDC Double CarTen for the VC Gallery team was made up of nine cyclists, all veterans or serving members of the military or police, who undertook their epic journey this weekend.

charity which works with armed forces veterans and the community on art projects.

“It was a very eventful weekend,” said dallery founder Barry John, who joined the cyclists’ support team in a transit van which followed them.

The group set off at the crack of dawn from Tudor Square, on Friday, May 11, and rode 110-miles, making it to Cardiff by 4pm.

The VCDC riders as they set off from Tenby. PICTURE: VCDC.

On Saturday, May 12 they took part in the CarTen100, the Cardiff to Tenby ride which hundreds of cyclists participate in each year, completing the second 110-mile stage of their journey.

“It was amazing,” said Barry. “At 7am they all cracked on again and they were absolutely amazing.

“When they arrived back in Tenby, the boys were already talking about when they wanted to start training for the Double CarTen 2019.”

The nine cyclists were Tim Phillips, Steve Griffiths, Roy Jones, Mark Whitby, Ken John, Adam Collett, Gavin Stubbins, Jonny Treharne and Steve Bradley.

The cycling team after arriving at Cardiff Castle. PICTURE: VCDC.

The riders all pushed themselves to their limits for the race.

Ken John had a close escape from a crash with a car just days before the race, but soldiered on battered and bruised despite having to replace his broken bike.

Gavin Stubbins suffered a back injury 20 miles into the first day, but was able to go the distance for both stages.

Simon Butler of Dyfed-Powys Police had also planned to ride but was injured while training, but still joined the ride as part of the support team.

Joining Simon and Barry in the support team were John Warlow, a sergeant major in the Royal Welsh Regiment and therapist Morwenna Putkin.

The riders have joined the gallery’s staff and volunteers for several events in the run-up to the race, including helping to launch a Matisse-inspired exhibition on Friday, May 4.

“I really wanted to let them know what it was their efforts were going towards. They have all become part of the community at the heart of our charity,” said Barry.

To donate toward the VCDC team’s efforts to raise money for the VC Gallery, visit their fundraising page.