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Four friends who met on one of Albion in the Community's (AITC) bike rides are getting back in the saddle to raise money for the charity.

David Sullivan, Chris North, David Farley and David Whittington were complete strangers when they embarked on AITC’s 2016 ride to Brussels.

But the four Brighton & Hove Albion fans got on so well they formed their own social cycling group and have met up regularly for rides through Sussex ever since.

In June they will again take part in...

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Friendship formed in the saddle is driving riders on to further support AITC

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Four friends who met on one of Albion in the Community’s (AITC) bike rides are getting back in the saddle to raise money for the charity.

David Sullivan, Chris North, David Farley and David Whittington were complete strangers when they embarked on AITC’s 2016 ride to Brussels.

But the four Brighton & Hove Albion fans got on so well they formed their own social cycling group and have met up regularly for rides through Sussex ever since.

In June they will again take part in AITC’s annual European cycle challenge, which this year ends in the German city of Cologne.

The trip departs the American Express Community Stadium on Thursday 7 June and returns on Sunday 10 June, with the cycling taking place over two days.

For the four friends, who also took part in AITC’s 2017 cycle challenge to Amsterdam, the ride can’t come soon enough. In fact, they’ve even convinced a fifth friend, Chris Reed, to join them.

Mr Sullivan explained: “I first found out about the event just before my 60th birthday and an advert came up on the big screen at the Amex Stadium.

“It was the sort of thing that I’d always wanted to do. As an added bonus I was able to raise money for the charity and meet new cycling companions.

“We go on rides together most weeks and AITC’s cycle challenge is now a highlight of the year because we get to spend time together and raise money for a very worthwhile cause. It really is brilliant.”

Mr North agreed. He said: “On the first day of the 2016 ride I got chatting to David Sullivan. We cycled together for quite a while and when we were in Bruges we met the others.

“When we got back we started going for cycles together and that’s just continued. It’s been brilliant.”

Money raised from the event, which is again being generously supported by American Express, will help fund AITC’s award-winning football sessions for people with a disability.

For more information, an in-depth ride guide, or to book a place, email: fundraising@albioninthecommunity.org.uk or call 01273 878246.