BIKERS from across the globe have paid tribute to a popular cyclist who died after suffering a suspected heart attack.
David Hargrave was cycling to his Sunderland home from work in Newcastle on Monday night when it is thought he had a heart attack as he rode along North Bridge Street.
Tributes to the 36-year-old, of Ennerdale in Ashbrooke, have already been flooding in on social networking website Twitter, with many already pledging to carry out bike rides in his memory.
His devastated wife Hannah said: “RIP my gorgeous husband. Love you forever.”
Sunderland store Cycleworld added: “Yesterday we lost a great friend and customer.
“A true cycling gent, a family man and great husband. You will always be remembered.”
Pal Craig Stephenson said: “He was a great man and a better friend. Devastated. Steady away mate.”
Just two months ago, David and friend Anthony Hudson cycled from Sunderland to London to raise money for Sport Relief.
The pair were aiming to complete the challenge in just 36 hours and raise £2,000 for the cause.
Fellow cyclist Bill Honeywell, also paid tribute to David. In May, Bill, of Lancashire, set off on a 4,500-mile bike ride covering Great Britain’s coastline to raise cash for Cancer Research UK.
Bill turned to Twitter to keep people up-to-date with his feat, which is how he met David.
He said: “As I approached the North East, having battled my way through Scottish gales, Dave tweeted to say he’d try and join me for a few miles.
“I didn’t expect to see him to be honest - people often promise but don’t fulfil.
“Good to his word, Dave found us at South Shields, and then cycled with us through Whitburn, his home town of Sunderland, which he knew like the back of his hand and clearly loved, then on to Seaham where we stopped for food and drink at our motorhome.
“He was so enthusiastic about everything. He loved his bike, his local area, his family, life, everything.
“I felt like he should be an ambassador for - well, the human race almost - he was clearly such a gentleman.
“Cycling - and the North East - lost a real gem of a man.”
Cycle group Gazetta, which David was a member of, described David as “one of the funniest, caring people you could wish to meet”.
People taking part in this year’s Cumbrian Cracker bike ride, being held next month, are now being asked to do it in memory of the avid cyclist.
Police were initially unsure of the cause of his death, but inquiries have revealed it was a possible heart attack, and no other vehicles were involved in the incident.
A post-mortem examination into the cause of David’s death is due to be carried out tomorrow.