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Meet our Smiles & Miles Prize Winners

Updated: Apr 8

Smiles and Miles is our annual cycling challenge to cycle as many miles as you can during the month of February.


Here’s what the winners had to say about taking part in the challenge and receiving their prizes. 


Thank you Cycle Spirit London, A&S Cycles, Litelok and Cycle Chic for the generous prize donations! 


Ikhlas (Winner of Most Inspirational Cycling Story)


Muslim woman with a bike in front of an owl statue
Ikhlas

“One of the things I love about Smiles and Miles is the positive energy of our sisters and working together as a team. It makes us feel energised to continue our journey.


“I went to the park and took some pictures with an owl statue because it symbolises how I feel when I ride. The picture of that ride led me to win photo of the week. I later told my cycling story and the support I received from the sisters was wholesome. 


“I will wear the helmet I won from Cycle Spirit with pride, knowing this will push me further in my journey.”





Eileen (Winner of Most Inspirational Cycling Story) 


“Smiles and Miles finally gave me the push I needed to start cycling on the road independently. I had just learned to ride a bike in February of the previous year. During the challenge, I rode to different parks, places and group rides on my own for the first time.


Woman with a bike near Buckingham Palace
Eileen

“I found that the WhatsApp groups were one of the most useful elements of Smiles and Miles. Photos or videos shared by the wider community of fellow Cycle Sisters provided much-needed 

encouragement to face fears and have adventures of my own.


“I was unexpectedly overjoyed to have won the Inspirational Story prize and have been given a bike service and helmet by A&S Cycles as a result. As a nervous rider with a secondhand bike, I look forward to putting them to good use!”


Mariam (Winner of Highest Outdoor Miles) 


“Participating in the Smiles and Miles challenge pushed me to get out of my comfort zone and explore new routes and places, and achieve my goal of cycling a 100-mile ride which contributed to me winning the most individual miles.


Muslim woman in a cycling helmet
Mariam

“I'm so happy to have won my pannier bag from Cycle Spirit London and I'm excited to use it for running my weekly errands and cycling to parks to enjoy picnics in the summer sun!”


Rayma (Winner of Highest Indoor Miles)


“I'm super pleased to have won the highest indoor miles, however, the reason I chose to take part in Smiles and Miles this year was to help get rid of the anxiety of riding outdoors again. I managed to do exactly that, from doing a few miles with my daughter in a park to my longest ride in almost 2 and a half years! Being a part of this challenge is incredibly motivating, and it really gives you the opportunity to push yourself to achieve your personal milestones and goals.

Muslim woman in a cycling helmet and sunglasses in a field of yellow flowers
Rayma

“I have to give a big shout-out to Team Newham and Cycle Sisters, it felt amazing having so much support and seeing women empower each other. I wouldn’t have been able to achieve all I had all within a month without this challenge. I truly am grateful for the experience and the connections I’ve made, and I am looking forward to the summer social rides!”


“I am grateful to have won a gift card from Cycle Spirit. Looking forward to visiting their shop and picking up some accessories for my bike.”


Deborah (Winner of Highest Fundraiser) 


Woman in a cycle helmet in a park in London
Deborah

“This was my first Smiles and Miles.  I saw it mentioned in the Newham Council email just as I was looking for a way to ease myself back into cycling after catching Covid, so I signed up.


“Thanks to my very generous friends, family and colleagues, and matched fundraising from my employer, I won top fundraiser, just when I was thinking that my bike was overdue a service, so I'm going to book her in as soon as possible. 


“I'm thankful for Cycle Spirit who have so kindly donated that prize. “






Deryn (Winner of Best Video) 


“One of the things I loved about Smiles and Miles was the social element. I went on many rides with many lovely sisters and I find riding with others so beneficial to my mental well-being. 


Muslim woman on a bike in a cycling helmet in the olympic park Stratford
Deryn

“On one ride some fellow cyclists and I created a fun video, which won the best video of Smiles and Miles! 


“I’m so grateful to have won such a secure lock from Litelok! I’m looking forward to using it on future rides to secure my pride and joy while enjoying coffee stops with my fellow cyclists!


Nicole (Winner of Inspirational Ride Leader) 


“This year's Smiles and Miles was amazing. We were able to organise quite a few rides and thanks to the Brompton Hire a few more sisters could come along. Also, the challenges were fun, I wouldn't have gone out to see a beautiful sunrise if it wasn't for some other sisters. 


“I'm delighted I picked up the "Inspirational Ride Leader" Award, it makes me very happy that I could make a difference for sisters who still prefer a guided ride or were happy to try some new routes with me. Some will hopefully be used soon for our weekly rides.


Two muslim women sitting in a coffee shop
Nicole (left)

“I'm very happy as well that I won a voucher from Cycle Spirit. I'll probably use it for a new helmet or another strong lock.”


Fatima (Winner of Best Route)

“I love how Smiles and Miles makes my February month always full of surprises.  I have been truly inspired and amazed by some of our new riders who have gone out of their comfort zones and tried long distances and newer destinations independently.  


“For Hounslow it has now become a tradition to host the annual Valentines' Ride during this month, using my lovely heart-shaped route. 


“Even better to win a Cycle Chic helmet for the best route! This will look cool with my commute bike.”


Muslim woman in a cycling helmet and cap and glasses
Fatima

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