Applications invited from riders seeking Dave Rayner Funding

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Talented youngsters are invited to apply for Dave Rayner Funding for the 2010 season. The Rayner Fund will be celebrating it's 14th year on November 14.

And we can expect the usual star-studded guest list at this popular annual fund raising night out at the Majestic Hotel in Harrogate, when the new selections can expect to rub shoulders with the greats of the cycling world.

Last year French hero Raymond Poulidor was the chief guest, invited by Brian Robinson to celebrate Robbo's 50th anniversary of his historic stage win in the Tour, the first by a Brit.

The theme this year is a celebration of Irish and Manx success over the years. Among the guests who  have indicated they will attend are  the famous Irish duo of Sean Kelly and Stephen Roche, plus that bolt from the blue from the Isle of Man, Manxman Mark Cavendish, winner of a record six stages in this year's Tour de France.

Kelly of course won the points competition four times in the Tour, while Roche landed the famous Triple - the Giro, Tour  and World road title in one season, 1987.

Since it's inception,  to the memory of Yorkshire pro David Rayner, the Fund has supported close on 250 riders over the years, providing them with the chance to fulfill their dreams. Their biggest achiever so far has been Tour de France yellow jersey David Millar. Others to shine in the pro ranks include Dan Martin.

This season's selections have enjoyed success, too, Richard Heathcote and Josh Hunt both winning in Belgium. Nikki Harris had two second places, one third and a fourth, and Matt Brammeier also landed a fourth place.

Prospective candidates for funding should visit the Dave Rayner Fund website  and fill in the application form. losing date for applicants is October 30, to Or by post, to: The Dave Rayner Fund, c/o 8 Beech Avenue, Horsforth, Leeds, LS18 4PA.

Tickets for the dinner cost £14. Tables can be block booked, for 10 or 12 guests. For details, contact Bill Holmes, 01706 377069. Or email:

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Keith Bingham joined the Cycling Weekly team in the summer of 1971, and retired in 2011. During his time, he covered numerous Tours de France, Milk Races and everything in-between. He was well known for his long-running 'Bikewatch' column, and played a pivotal role in fighting for the future of once at-threat cycling venues such as Hog Hill and Herne Hill Velodrome.