Sunday, July 22, 2007

Back in the saddle in Florida heat...but easy compared to last weekend's ride...

Checking in from the road in Delray Beach, Florida.

Back in the saddle again at the National Clay Court Championships. Temperature and humidity are both very high. Not much shade…watching incoming freshmen Will Guzick, who made it to the final 32 (out of 256). He fell yesterday to a soon-to-be Texas A&M Aggie Kayvon Karimi. Aba Omodele Lucien advanced to the quarters, where he was finally stopped by #6 seed Bradley Klahn.

Although the sun is tough, it does not compare to the bicycle ride we took last Saturday. Many thanks to so many of you who graciously sponsored Bonnie and my 125 mi. ride to buy medicine for AIDS orphans in Thailand. Yes, we did finish it. It took 12 plus hours with head winds throughout the day of 15-20 mph. Thank goodness for mostly flat terrain of Wisconsin!

We couldn't have done it without the aid of the support crew. The ride consisted of 15-20 miles at a time, with 15-minute breaks, with eight segments (five before lunch, an hour break, and three more). Legs 5 and 6 were the killers, featuring wind and mostly gradual uphill. On the breaks, we poured food and fluids into our bodies as fast as we could, while still leaving time for the necessary "pit stops." It was a faster pace than we usually ride, but the prospect of having to cut through the wall of the wind by ourselves propelled us to keep within the necessary drafting distance of the peloton at all costs. The picture that makes it appear as if Bonnie and I are leading the pack is mostly an illusion, but great for a keepsake. The pulling power of the group, not only in drafting, but with its inspiration, made all the difference. The ride is called Ceboride (, in honor of a beautiful young AIDS orphan in Thailand who was the inspiration for this ride. Cebo's photograph was handed on to a new person at each rest break, to be worn on the back of the rider as inspiration to the rest of us (you'll see Bonnie pinning Cebo's picture on my back). On our own, we certainly could not have accomplished this goal. With Cebo in our thoughts, and with help from so many others, including many of you, we did it. If you intended to show your support but haven't quite gotten to it, here's the address once more time:

Cebo Ride Account Manager
Maggie Shea
N5350 Ledgetop Dr.
Fond du Lac, WI 54935

The race raised in advance about $70,000, and much more comes in post Ceboride. Last year, it rose to about $120,000 from only 30+ riders. Every penny goes to the kids - no overhead. Can't do much better than that these days when helping a worthy cause!

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