A CYCLIST who suffered a a cardiac arrest while on a trip with his cycling club was saved thanks to the skill and quick-thinking of his fellow riders.

Guy Mallon, 47, part of Harrogate-based cycling club Middle Aged Men In Lycra (MAMIL), was dramatically brought back to life during a weekend trip to the North East when he collapsed due to a cardiac arrest near Durham on the return ride.

He was resuscitated because the club had a defibrillator in their support van and the club members were trained in first aid.

Fellow member Neil Turnbull said: "We were four miles outside of Durham on the return leg when I heard one of the cyclists shout my name and then I saw Guy face down by the side of the road. A minute or so earlier he had told me that he had felt a pain in his chest so I knew what was wrong.

"There was no sign of life. Eighteen months earlier all the members of the team were trained in CPR and mouth to mouth resuscitation and I started with CPR straight away.

"Additionally, being an organised group, a year earlier it was decided to bring a defibrillator on major rides which was carried in the support van."

Nick Wright took responsibility for setting up and applying the defibrillator to Mr Mallon's chest.

There was no response to the first shock, but two minutes later with the second shock, his heart started again and he began breathing. In total, he was unconscious for around eight minutes.

Medical advisor Hal Convery, who took the call at North East Ambulance Service, said: "I was really surprised that they had a defibrillator – it made a huge difference and it's one of the easiest CPR calls I've taken, because they knew what they were doing. "

Mr Turnbull added: "It was a real team effort. A couple of minutes after his heart re-started the ambulance arrived. When the paramedics arrived they said: 'You've saved his life.' It was very dramatic and emotional for all of us. We all thought we'd done something really special."

Mr Mallon was taken to University Hospital of North Durham and then transferred to the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough. He's now out of hospital after treatment and surgery. Prior to his cardiac arrest, he was fit and active was a keen runner and played football on a weekly basis. Medical checks have been unable to establish why it occurred and there is no family history of heart disease.

The married father of three young children,said: "The only thing I remember is cycling along and having a conversation with Neil about not feeling great.

"In a pretty unique set of circumstances, I was saved thanks to good planning, preparation and quick-thinking. It goes to show that with the right training, people can make a difference. I would urge other cycling clubs to train in CPR and, if possible, have a defibrillator."