Brenda has asked me to provide a little summary of this year's ride - sorry that it is so long overdue! I have been trying to personally thank everyone who contributed to this year's Ride to Conquer Cancer, either by email, phone, or in person, but it is taking far too long so I apologize if you have not heard from me yet.
I received 127 donations, totalling just over $14,000 which far exceeded my original goal of $6,000! So, thank-you, thank-you, thank-you to all who donated! All money raised during this event goes directly to the Alberta Cancer Foundation and this year we raised over $7.3 million, which is a record for any single fundraising event in Alberta history, so I am very proud to be a part of it.
This year's event started and ended at Spruce Meadows, just south of Calgary, which is a beautiful venue to host the event, but proved to be a bit of a traffic nightmare, the morning of the event. Fortunately the ride was delayed approx half an hour, otherwise Brenda would not have made it in time to see me off.
Day 1 began at about 8:30 am and after a couple of pit stops to recharge and have lunch along the way, it ended at approx 1:00 pm and 115 kms later. It was a beautiful day, with a slight breeze and temperatures hovering between 25 to 30 degrees. It was a fairly enjoyable ride, except for maybe the 15 km hill just south of Nanton that lasted for about 45 minutes and came after already riding over 90 kms in the heat - I would have preferred to skip that part!
Our camp was setup at Chain Lakes Provincial Park, complete with hot showers, lots of food, cold beer, music, and two-man tents for as far as the eye could see. It was quite the sight! Just like last year, everyone was in bed by 9:30 and you could hear a pin drop by 10 o'clock. Nothing like a little exercise and fresh air to knock a person out!
The ride on day 2 began at about 7:30 am and 105 kms later ended at approx 11:10 am. My butt was a little sore for the first hour or so until it either went numb or I managed to block out the pain, and the last hour or two I counted down the kms because my knees were starting to give out, but overall I thought I faired pretty well. The Ride to Conquer Cancer is a "ride", not a "race", but for those that are somewhat competitive, it is not just a leisurely pedal through the countryside - the competitive spirit kicks in! So when I finished in the top 50 out of 1880 riders, I was really happy and proud of how I did.
All the pain and sweat was definitely worthwhile, especially when I crossed the finished line and Brenda was there waiting for me and came running to give me a big hug and kiss. I can't wait to do it all over again!
Thanks again to everyone who contributed and I still plan to contact you all one by one to thank you personally.