For three days at the end of July, 17 fundraisers and six support riders completed Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra’s Sierra Cycle Challenge. Cyclists rode 165 miles and climbed over 10,000 feet while raising more than $100,000. Everyone who participated holds a special place in their heart for DSES, and riders included staff, volunteers, and civilian and military athletes with disabilities. The money raised during this year’s Sierra Cycle Challenge will support scholarships to provide adaptive sports lessons and therapeutic recreation to athletes regardless of financial need.
Circumnavigating the Glass Mountains from Mammoth Lakes, through Benton and Lee Vining, Sierra Cycle Challenge riders had some amazing firsts.\
David, a blind veteran and first time Sierra Cycle Challenge rider, said “I’ve never been that fast on a bike before!”
Julius, an Army Ranger veteran rode the distance on a handcycle. Another first time participant, he saw the ride as a challenge. “I was counting snow stakes to mark my progress on the climbs and got to 400 at one point.” When asked how fast he went on the descent, he smiled and admitted “53 miles per hour.” He said “It was really hard while I was riding it, but now that it’s done, I love it.”
The Sierra Cycle Challenge support crew was unstoppable, keeping everyone well fed and in top form. Many local businesses and individuals came together as incredibly generous sponsors for the event including Footloose Sports, Mammoth Chevron, Mammoth Lakes Police Department, Doug & Debbie Lindfors, Brent Truax and Sierra Nevada Resort & Spa, Burger’s Restaurant, CLIF Bar, Mono Vista RV Park, Sarah Adams and Dutch Pete’s Ranch, Z Pizza, Mammoth Coffee Roasters, Black Velvet Coffee, Hive Lip Balm, VONS, and Giovanni’s, as well as support riders Dave deVries, Jeff Byberg, Tim Standifer, Ron Borin, EL Smoogen, and Thilo Wilhelm, and massage therapists, Michelle Mather, Melissa Soltero, Sarah Asa, Neva West, and Ryan Swoverland. Thank you all.
With individual donations ranging from $2.00 to four digits, the Sierra Cycle Challenge exceeded its goal of raising $100,000.00 to help ensure that Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra never has to say “no” to an athlete for because of financial need.
Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra would like to thank the loving people of the Eastern Sierra and the Town of Mammoth Lakes for once again supporting our athletes and our programs.