Friday, October 22, 2004

SV peleton streaks to finish

Trek raises cancer awareness from Canada to Mexico

Express Staff Writer

Riding for the cure, Sun Valley cyclists Troy Turvy, Clint Lightner, Bill Rickard, Lars Erik-Johnson, and Tory Canfield finished a fundraising race from Canada to Mexico raising over $20,000 for cancer research.

Racing for a cure for cancer, five Sun Valley bicycle riders rode from Peace Arch State Park on the Canadian border of Washington to Border Field State Park in San Diego, Calif. On the 1,688-mile journey made in a mere 18 days--an average of better than 100 miles per day--the riders raised more than $20,000 that will be split between the local Tom Montgomery Cancer Fund and the national cancer research organization the national Lance Armstrong Foundation.

?Our longest day was 130 miles,? said Tory Canfield, one of the team members. ?We also had a lot of vertical. It was pretty hilly.?

In fact, all told the riders climbed 57,800 vertical feet during their effort to raise money to contribute to the fight against cancer.

?Physically we held up well,? said team organizer Clint Lightner. ?And, as a fundraiser, I thought it was pretty successful.?

To help the riders, two massage therapists, Jenn Tyrer and Kate Leah volunteered to administer to the performance athletes on their ride from Canada to Mexico.

?It was a lot of work, but it did go really smoothly,? Canfield said. ?We had a lot of support along the way.?

The team faced some headwinds and pouring rain, but they also met many people who housed them and rooted for them. They had some great weather and tail winds along the coast, too.

The team members, Lightner, Bill Rickard, Troy Turvy, Lars Erik-Johnson, and Canfield are all endurance athletes who saw the race as their personal mission in the race for the cure.

Tom Montgomery, a close friend of the cyclists and a former member of the X-Men cycling team, succumbed to cancer last year.

Lance Armstrong, a cancer survivor and six-time Tour de France victor, was diagnosed with testicular cancer at age 25. Given less than a 40 percent chance to live, Armstrong underwent aggressive treatment to beat the disease, rolling on to more Tour victories and cancer research fundraising.

Armstrong has inspired the cycling community to do their part in the fundraising campaig. In five years the Peleton Project has raised over $5 million for the LAF.

The Sun Valley team set an ambitious goal of raising $50,000 through their peleton project. Although the cross-country ride is over, the riders will continue their fundraising efforts tomorrow at the Idaho State Cyclo-Cross Championships at River Run Lodge. There they will sell jerseys from their ride.

To see more images and to read daily logs of the race check the team?s Web site: Donations are still being accepted, and donors can choose which organization they would like their donation to go to. Pledges to the Montgomery fund will go to building scholarship funds for children participating in Sun Valley Road and Dirt Bicycling Camps.

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