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CYCLISTS are gearing up to take on one of the region’s biggest charity rides.

The Ruby Ride will take place on Sunday to raise money for The Rowans Hospice, and organisers hope up to 500 people will take part.

The Rowans’ events fundraiser Sophie Gunner said: ‘We’re all looking forward to it and we’re hoping we have a really good time. Last year we raised almost £60,000 so we’re hoping to do the same or a little bit better this year.’

There are three routes to choose from – an 18-mile ‘leisure’ route around Portsea Island, a 30-mile ‘challenge’ route which loops up to Purbrook and a 65-mile ‘epic’ route.

Ms Gunner said: ‘The 65-mile event goes up to Petersfield. It’s a lovely scenic ride.’

People can register at the starting point at 1000 Lakeside, North Harbour. The first groups of cyclists will leave at 9.30am. Children aged five to 15 are welcome to take part, and all participants are given a T-shirt and receive a medal at the finish line.

Call (023) 9223 7142 for more information.