The rider who suffered a heart attack at the world’s largest amateur cycling event, RideLondon-Essex, on 29 May 2022 has died.

41 year-old Valentin Buliga, a native of Bulgaria living in London, went into cardiac arrest 49 miles into the 100 mile race at Stebbings Green, a small village near Essex, and crashed after loosing consciousness.

While the race was stopped and thousands of riders waited patiently, emergency rescue workers started life measures and evacuated Buliga to Essex Cardiothoracic Centre hospital, where he slipped into a coma and never regained consciousness. He passed away 22 June.

John Jorja, speaking on behalf of Valentin’s family, said, “Valentin loved cycling and was so happy and excited on the morning of the event. He was a fantastic person, colleague and friend. He very generously gave the gift of life to others after he passed.”

Buliga will be buried in Bulgaria and a GoFundMe page has been set up to aid his family. At press time over £12,000 has been donated. One heartfelt donor wrote, “What a fantastic person, colleague and friend… Gone from our sight, but never from our hearts!”

After missing the past two years due to the pandemic, over 25,000 riders participated in RideLondon-Essex 2022, which started in the heart of London, journeyed to Essex and then rolled back to finish on Tower Bridge in London.

Photos: GoFundMe