Golfers take to the Saddle in Ryder Cup Challenge

Four middle-aged golfers from Yorkshire are swapping their clubs and putters for saddles and shorts this week as they embark on a gruelling 1150 mile cycle challenge in support of two cancer charities.

Inspired by a mutual friend who died in 2012, the group has taken to the saddle in a nine day cycling challenge which takes in all thirteen Ryder Cup host venues in England, Scotland, Wales and the Republic of Ireland.

As part of the “Tour de Ryder Cup” challenge, Andy Crowther, Rick Gillgrass, Darren Tordoff and Andrew Walker from West Yorkshire will raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK and Melanoma UK, as well as raise awareness of the two diseases.

The plucky foursome, aged 45 to 53, set off from their local golf club near Bradford on Monday morning and have already notched up visits to Royal Lytham, Birkdale, Southport & Ainsdale and the K Club.

From there the route takes them to Celtic Manor, Walton Heath and Wentworth before heading north to The Belfry, Lindrick and Moortown near Leeds.

On 21st September the team will arrive at Ganton on the North Yorkshire Coast before tackling the 220 mile stage to Scotland, taking in Muirfield on the 22nd and arriving at Gleneagles for the start of this year’s Ryder Cup tournament on 23rd September.

On route the riders will collect pin flags from every Ryder Cup host venue, which they hope to present to this year’s Ryder Cup teams when they reach Gleneagles.

The Tour de Ryder Cup is being entirely self-funded and has already raised over £11000 for its twin charities. The challenge was inspired by the death of the riders’ mutual friend and fellow golfer Simon Ashdown who, aged fifty, lost his battle with Melanoma in December 2012.

Rider Darren Tordoff, 53, said the Tour de Ryder Cup would be a fitting tribute to a close friend.

“Simon lost his battle with skin cancer just two days before Christmas 2012. He was a passionate golfer and a friend to all of us”.

“His passing was the inspiration behind the Tour de Ryder Cup and will be what keeps us going on the longest stage of our journey – the 210 miles between Ganton in Scarborough and Muirfield. We’ll be thinking of Simon with every turn of the wheels”, Darren added.

Donations in support of the Tour De Ryder Cup can be made at and the team’s progress can be followed on Twitter at @TourDeRyderCup or on Facebook at


Graham J Gordon, The Editor and Owner, GolfblogspotUK

The GolfblogspotUK website is owned and run by former Walker Cup player and European Tour card holder, Graham J Gordon, from Scotland, the Home of Golf. The owner is a golf fanatic who had to retire early from competitive tour play due to a back injury that required surgery. Graham wishes to share his knowledge and own experiences of the game with the GolfblogspotUK community and to receive your feedback on all aspects of the sport. Graham has been playing the game for over 20 years and received a great deal of pleasure from the sport. He has met several friends and visited many different places around the world, thanks to playing the great game of golf. Time to put a little back into the game to help others.

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