Starter and medal presenter for this year's Tour de Vale announced

The starter and medal presenter for this year's Tour de Vale bike ride have been announced by organisers.

The BBC's arts editor Will Gompertz is the starter for the event at Stoke Mandeville Stadium on Sunday June 9, while Kris Aves, who was injured in a terrorist attack on Westminster Bridge in March 2017 will present medals to everyone who finishes the course.

The start of last year's Tour de Vale

The start of last year's Tour de Vale

Will was previously a director of Tate Media, and has written extensively for both The Guardian and The Times newspapers.

He says he is 'delighted' to be official starter of the county's biggest bike ride, and hopes the day will be a huge success, with three routes (100km, 60km and 25km) for participants to enjoy across scenic countryside all in aid of WheelPower.

The 100km route is designed for experienced cyclists, the 60km is described as 'a challenging ride with a few steep hills' and the 25km route is a fun ride for all the family which is free for under 16s.

Everybody who finishes the race will be presented with a medal by Kris Aves who has his own remarkable back story.

The BBC's arts editor Will Gompertz is the official race starter of this year's Tour de Vale

The BBC's arts editor Will Gompertz is the official race starter of this year's Tour de Vale

In March 2017 Kris was returning from a commendation ceremony with the Met Police.

As he crossed Westminster Bridge he was hit by a car driven by Khalid Masood in an attack which killed five people and injured many.

His injuries put him in a coma for eight days as he suffered two broken legs, a head injury, a damaged shoulder, a damaged sternum and damage to his spinal cord.

The attack left Kris needing to use a wheelchair, and with a permanent spinal injury.

Kris Aves, who will present medals to all finishers at this year's Tour de Vale

Kris Aves, who will present medals to all finishers at this year's Tour de Vale

Following rehabilitation at Stoke Mandeville, Kris attended WheelPower's inter spinal unit games last year where he won a medal in a nine ball pool competition.

Martin McElhatton, chief executive of WheelPower said: “The Mix 96 Tour de Vale is WheelPower’s largest fundraising event and we rely on the generosity of those taking part to help us raise much needed funds to support disabled people and provide life transforming opportunities in sport.

"By entering the ride people are helping WheelPower but if they can raise some additional funds through sponsorship this is a wonderful way of providing disabled children and adults with the change to access sport.

"Riders can also buy the Mix 96 Tour de Vale cycling jerseys and every purchase supports the charity.

"We want everyone to have a safe ride and we are again offering a free of charge bike check on Saturday June 8 at Stoke Mandeville Stadium so your bike is in tip-top condition.

"We look forward to welcoming everyone for what promises to be a wonderful ride and thank everyone for supporting the bike ride again this year.”