This year’s Macmillan Ride of their Lives 2018 will feature three amateur riders from Ryedale. We are featuring each rider. For our final interview, we speak to Bertie Hayton. DAVID MACKIE reports

TAKING part in the Best Western Hotels and Macmillan Ride of their Lives in June will be the achievement of an long-held ambition for Bertie Hayton.

“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” said Bertie, 24, of Nunnington, and it’s a cause close to her heart.

She will be riding the race on Saturday, June 16 in memory of family members who have died from cancer.

The race sees 11 amateurs ride the last race of the day in front of tens of thousands of people.

“I will be dedicating my ride to my grandma who lost the battle to cancer a few years ago, and my other grandfather who lost his life to pancreatic cancer,” she said.

One in two people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, according to research by Cancer Research UK, and published in the British Journal of Cancer.

“That’s inspired me to get out there and fundraise,” Bertie added, saying that the race has given her fundraising a purpose and a target.

She’s had some experience of riding, as she owns and rides - as an amateur - a point-to-point horse.

“I’m lucky to have grown up with horses,” she said. “All the different riders have different stories and different experiences. For me, I’m really excited for the challenge. To ride in front of 25,000 people is pretty daunting.”

In preparation, Bertie is in training: in the gym, on the equicizer and on the gallops.

All the riders fundraise for Macmillan in the months before the race.

“My spare time will be spent dedicated to fundraising for Macmillan as I bid to raise a minimum of £5000,” she said.

Events will include a quiz supper at the Plough in Wombleton at 7pm tomorrow (Thursday) and a fashion show on April 27 at a venue to be confirmed.

Bertie will also hold a charity ball at York Racecourse on Saturday, July 7. This will include a drinks reception, four-course meal, live music and auction of promises and signed sporting memorabilia.

Added to these there are still opportunities available for event and race day sponsorship. For information and to donate go to