Most people who read this blog know that I like to bike. Each year I try to channel that love for biking into doing some good by doing a charity bike ride. This past Sunday I rode in the Davis Livestrong Challenge, which supports the Lance Armstrong Livestrong Foundation, a cancer advocacy group.

The day before the ride I went on my usual Saturday morning bike ride. I was kind of hesitant to go, seeing as how I’d be riding a century the next day, but it was fortunate that I went. We found that my tires were in pretty bad shape, I flatted three times. Good thing Ray had a patch kit with him, otherwise it would have been a long walk home… So anyways I bought a new set of tires and installed them the night before the Livestrong Challenge.

The starting line. When I arrived there were already hundreds of people lined up. The matching jerseys on the left are a group from Fat Cyclist, which is one of the few bike blogs that I read regularly. I wish I were a fat cyclist. Or maybe I should rephrase that– I am a fat cyclist, I guess what I want is a Fat Cyclist jersey to prove it…

The national anthem before the ride. My videos always come out crappy– but hopefully from this crappy video you could see how huge this ride is. I think there were over 1500 riders who raised over $900,000 in total.

I rode with my high school buddy Tim, who lost his sister to cancer. Each year he does a charity ride in her memory.

I’ve been riding for years now, but I think this is the first picture that exists of me in a peloton. This is right at the beginning, the first turn out of the starting gates. Thanks go out to Winnie and Jerry for taking pictures.

The ride starts out heading north towards Woodland. The Livestrong ride is really well supported, with cars leading the pelotons, and CHP officers directing traffic on the way out of Davis.

Lance Armstrong on the right leading the pack. Haha just kidding. He wasn’t here this year. I just took a picture of some random guy who happened to be wearing all the Livestrong gear. This guy even had a Livestrong helmet…

Since Lance Armstrong wasn’t there, the people at the front of the peloton were team Fat Cyclist, who raised over $90k, and a group called the Texas 4000, who were riding from Texas to Alaska raising money for the Livestrong Foundation. When I saw the Texas 4000 jerseys I figured I was close to the front, so I decided to try to make a break for one of the faster pelotons in the front. The peloton I ended up in was super fast, riding above 25mph. I got dropped as soon as they made a left turn into a headwind. I wondered how much faster the peloton would’ve been if Lance were in front…

All things considered, this was a very easy ride. No major climbs. There was a stiff headwind towards the end, but that section of ride was only for a couple of miles. So this was a very fast paced ride. It ended up being my first sub six hour century.

The food at the end was pretty good, provided by Burgers & Brew.

Honey Stinger was one of the sponsors of this ride. I picked up enough gel shots and bars for a month of training rides. I think these are my new favorite bike fuel.

I wanted to say thanks again to everyone who supported me on this ride. Together we raised over $600 for the Lance Armstrong Livestrong Foundation’s mission of improving the lives of those with cancer.

Things I’m thankful for:

  • Friends and family who supported me financially and in spirit for this ride.

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