A DEVASTATED cyclist has pleaded for the return of his £4,000 racing bike - which he used to raise funds in memory of a youngster who died from cancer.
Rider James Jones fears that thieves who stole his pride and joy may have taken the bike to order and may not realise the heartbreaking story behind it.
James, a member of Doncaster Wheelers, took part in a gruelling 1,000 mile trek between John O’Groats and Land’s End last summer in memory of little Johsua Rose, son of friends Sam and Shaun Rose who died in 2011 aged just 17 months from an aggressive form of cancer.
He said: “There is a lot of sentimental value attached to the bike because of what it was used for. Whoever took it knew exactly what they were looking for because they didn’t touch anything else and its not like an ordinary bike. I hope someone out there will be able to help or seeing this will prick someone’s conscience.”
James, 26, only took up cycling in 2011 and quickly fell in love with the support, signing up to the End2End Challenge last summer to help raise money for Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice which cared for Joshua as well as Action Medical Research.
He said: “I wanted to do something as a personal challenge and raise money for Joshua. I raised more than £3,000 and went through a lot on the bike so it means a lot.”
The Giant TCR Composite cycle is worth £2,000 alone with wheels at £850, a computer sat nav system at £400 and other expensive accessories bringing the total of the bike to more than £4.000.
It was stolen in the early hours of March 9 from the garage of his home in Bawtry Road, Bessacarr.
James, who works for Bawtry-based fashion retailer Robinsons, said: “My dad heard the garage door being opened and jumped out of bed and shouted at the thief out of the window as he was getting onto the bike.
“But by the time he’d got downstairs, the thief was nowhere to be seen and had disappeared.
Anyone with information should contact South Yorkshire Police on 101.