|The 4 of us, before the start of the 2012 Tour de Cure|
First things first: We are still accepting donations. The link is: http://main.diabetes.org/goto/teamorel
In flipping through the blog, I found that I used it to put out pre-tour fundraising messages in 2006 and 2007. The 2006 blog post revealed that my sneakers, water bottle, gloves, bicycle and biking shorts were the same this morning as 6 years ago... and this is not an advertisement for the condition of the sneakers! Aaron used a bike that year that can best be described as a large toy (and which nearly ended up in a neighbor's scrap heap earlier this year, but there's another story there), but he managed 15 miles on it all the same.
Later, I blogged our rides in 2008 and 2009. The 2008 ride was Aaron's first at the 25 mile distance, under riding conditions that can best be described as brutal. The 2009 ride, in ideal conditions, was the first for the entire family. That ride, and all the rides since, have had Aaron and I ride 25 miles, and Lori and Elianna ride 10 miles. The blog pieces also reveal the extent to which the ride was an annual white knuckle event with the bike rack: That the bikes had come loose in 2007, and nearly detached on the way home in 2009. In 2011, the bikes did detach, while we were driving I-96 on the way to the ride. Somehow, though, neither was destroyed; Aaron's has a slight wobble in the back and mine some handlebar damage. We retired the rack after the 2011 ride; this year I borrowed both a vehicle with a hitch, and a Thule 4-bike hitch rack, and those bikes were calm and happy.
|Team Orel: 2012 Tour de Cure|
|The Michigan 2012 Tour de Cure route and elevation, as posted to MapMyRide.com|
|Elianna at the 2012 Tour de Cure rest stop|
As the morning progressed, the temperature on my new odometer unit showed a reading in excess of 100 degrees Fahrenheit; I've determined that the temperature reading there is a little exaggerated, but it was hot. I made Aaron stop at the end of hills at 18 miles and again at 22 miles, just to make sure he and Veronica was sufficiently hydrated to make it to the end.
We finished our course around 1:15pm -- slightly earlier than Aaron's first 25-mile ride in 2008, despite a starting time more than an hour later. I also learned then that Elianna made it through her ride without having to walk her bike even once; maybe she'll be ready for 25 miles next year.
The fundraising, meanwhile, has been remarkable this year. After a late start, we have amassed a total of 113 individual contributions, totaling $4262. That total is enough to place our team in 6th place among all family/friend teams riding in Michigan Tour de Cure; it is also the most we have ever raised. Elianna also developed a competitive streak, trying to beat Aaron's fundraising total. At one point, she even said, "Aaron is more than $100 ahead of me. My spirit is crushed." Aaron did end up beating her total (so far), but it was a lot closer than last year.
|Aaron and Veronica just after finishing, as Veronica's dad snaps a photo.|