This past weekend was the 4th annual Tour de Cure ride for TheOverTheHillGang.
The “team” and I use that word loosely since none of us are even near to being classified as racers, was 21 riders strong this year. We had co-workers, family, friends and friends of friends join us for either the 25 or 50 mile ride.
This ride, of all the rides I do, is probably the most focused on fun and least focused on performance. This year in addition to riding with my wife on the pepto-bike, I had both of my daughters and my semi-adopted, part-time daughter riding with me.
Our goal, in addition to having fun and riding together was to raise $15,000 for the American Diabetes Association, a group that does a huge amount of work in trying to find a cure for diabetes.
As we always do, we went up on Saturday to hang out, socialize, have a fun team dinner and prepare for Sunday’s ride. Sunday actually started pretty early for me since I had forgotten my shoes. I was at Walmart at 5:15am buying shoes to wear. Yes, we were only doing 25 miles and yes, I have toe clips on the tandem, but there was no way I was doing it in flip-flops which is the only thing I had brought with me.
At dinner the evening before it was decided that Deb and I would pull her friend Anita’s granddaughter in a trailer. Anita was originally planning to do it, but due to illness hadn’t really been riding much. This would add an additional 6ft to the already long and bright pink tandem. Good thing we were only doing the 25.
The weather on the ride was absolutely gorgeous. Temps in the mid to high 70s, a little wind, but not too bad, and clear skies greeted us as we wound our way through the Napa valley and its vineyards.
As we came in to the rest stop we were caught by Tracy and Tammy who had done the 50 mile route. They told us that most of the others were ahead of us and making good time. As we filled our water bottles and bellies we found George was already there. Gary, Janet, Jerry and Evan rolled in not long after so we hung about and chatted while our group prepared for what would be our second half and they got ready for their last 12 miles.
We quickly spread out with George, Gary, Janet, Jerry and Evan quickly leaving us behind. Evidently chatting and stopping, taking pictures and generally plodding along taking our time doesn’t make for fast progress on a 25 mile ride.
The last little climb back up to the start is usually the toughest part of the ride for new riders, but our group motored right along and crossed the finish line amid much clapping and celebration. For several members of our team this was their longest ride ever and the after ride beverages and food were a nice reward.
What about my personal goals for the event? Well, I shared a gorgeous day on the bike with my girls and a bunch of my friends, everyone had fun, no-one got hurt and we raised a good chunk of money for an important cause…..Yep, complete and total success!