OK, I’m starting to feel like solo-blogger here. Where is everybody?
I have good news, and I have bad news.
Let’s start with the bad. Rebel Rider Michael Whalen who has has been with the team almost every year since 2004 has had to drop out due to other commitments. Michael and has raised a lot for MS in that time and he’ll be missed. Sure hope he can come back next year. It just won’t be the same without him at the front of the pack.
Now for the good. Four sleeps to the MS Riding Mountain Challenge on September 8-9 and your RR Rebel Riders have a new member, Gurdeesh Ghuman from NDC Security! Not only that, we’ve topped $3,000 and are #4 on the top-fundraising-team list for the event! Thank you RRC!
So this will likely be the last bio before the big ride, partly because I don’t yet have one for Roxanne or Gurdeesh. But I do have one for Mike!
This will be ride #4 for Mike Poitras, and it all started when I emailed him a link to the sign up page with a single comment:“Are you man enough?”. The rest is history.
As Mike says, “I have enjoyed every year that we bike as a team. Great company, scenery and a worthwhile cause!”
But Mike was cycling long before the MS Ride. Like most of us, he cycled daily as a kid, first with Dad holding the back of the seat, moving after many skinned knees to a 3-speed with a banana seat (remember those?), and finally to a 10-speed road bike. But a driver’s license at 16 resulted in the bike slowly collecting dust.
It was his wife to be (Vi) that got him back onto the saddle, encouraging him to try a mountain bike and to commute. Since then he’s used a ‘cross’ bike that is light enough to help him ‘keep that edge’, but sturdy enough to commute with heavy saddle bags. They have been having friendly challenges every year since to see who can put on more kilometres (last year he put on 5,000!). They regularly bike together and plan their holidays with cycling in mind. Now, Mike can’t imagine a life without biking.
“Every spring when I hop on, I am reminded of how much I enjoy it. It reminds me of my youth and that feeling of being ALIVE! I have met some wonderful people. I have discovered that there is a bond amongst those that bike. My personal hero is a fellow in his 70’s who still will regularly ride on 100 kilometre trips.” (I wonder who that is?) “I can’t keep up with him! One of my dreams is to be able to still ride when I’m in my 70’s. My second dream is to bike to Montreal!”
And so Mike and the team are just about ready to go again. You still have time to push us higher in the standings and to help your Red River Rebel Riders top $3,500 for 2012. All your donations, 100%, go directly to MS research and to helping those suffering with MS. Your rrrr… Riders must each pay a registration fee and raise a minimum of $250 to be able to ride, and though we are graciously allowed the use of College vans to get us to Dauphin and back, we pay for our own accommodation in both Dauphin and Clear Lake. We do our bit, but we rely on you to make it all worthwhile with a tax deductible donation. No donation is too small. Pledge securely online today at the RR Rebel Riders team page and help us to wipe out MS!