Long weekend and I completely overbooked myself. My dad was in town from Chicago and it was my mothers birthday. My mom and dad are not together, since about the early 70's, so you can imagine the juggling act. I completely ran out of steam and didn't do the ride on Sunday. I usually don't ride on Sundays but I woke up at 5:30 to head to Dripping Springs and do the ride and realized and just didn't have it in me. I went back to bed for a much needed 4 more hours of sleep. I knew I needed to take my dad and his wife to lunch and the airport, then head to my moms. It all worked out o.k. I hated to miss the Sunday ride, but I got to do the most unbelievable ride on Sat. Every year my cycling team helps out the LAF by doing support for the Peleton Ride. These are the big fund raisers for the LAF and they get their chance to ride and be photographed with Lance. My team rode out to Mandola Winery, hauling ass, which just about killed me. Two really fast paced hours on the bike. We rode with two groups. The first raised over 10k. I rode helping out two women in the back named Susan and Deb. They are about my age and have been best friends since the third grade. They both went to elementary and high school together, then later to KU in Kansas together. They live across the country from each other but have remained best friends. Susan has been fighting cancer for a long time and Deb was there in support of her. We had a great time chatting and they finished last, but finished their ride. I really enjoyed chatting with them.
In the second group, all that had raised over 30k this year, I ended up looking out for an 8 year old named Max. I remember Max from a previous year when I rode with him and his dad. This year, Max was riding with his uncle. His dad has had an inoperable brain tumor for 10 years and is a real fighter. Max ran the 5k on Sat morning and his goal was to ride with Lance and do at least 5 miles. We had a couple of big hills in Dripping Springs and Max did it all. His uncle took off near the end to get his photo op with Lance so Max and I got to ride the last two miles together. I broke my heart to know that this little guy will most likely lose his father in '09. I'm sure I'll see him again next year. I am grateful that I got to ride with him and his uncle. Their sister was just diagnosed with breast cancer and had surgery last week. I'm sure Max had his aunt on his mind this weekend too. See Max pictured here:
This pic is of me and Davis Phinney. Davis is a living legend in American cycling. He was winning big European races in the 80's when there wasn't much love or support for American cyclists. Davis is fighting his own battle with Parkinson's. He shows up every year to support LAF. He's a bit shakey when he's just standing there, but smooth as butter on the bike. Find out more about him at www.davisphinneyfoundation.com
Here is a picture of some of the big fundraisers there for their private ride with LAF. This is John from my team giving them the rundown on how the ride with Lance will go. We try to make sure everyone gets their pic on the bike with Lance. P