Despite a slumping economy and a team short two members from last year’s 13, Team Try-Angles, Club Try-Angles’ entry in this year’s Harmons Best Dam Bike Ride, cruised on, raising nearly $8,500 for research into multiple sclerosis.
The two-day tour, held yearly in Cache County’s Blacksmith Fork Canyon, is a fundraiser for the Utah Multiple Sclerosis Society. Money raised goes to research for treatment and a cure for the autoimmune disease, which affects approximately 400,000 Americans.
Although the team had 11 members to last year’s high of 13, team captain Adam Frost said the cyclists — straight men and women and gay men — exceeded their fundraising goal of $5,000.
“We expect it to be $9,000 when all is said and done,” he said, noting that some donations were still coming in and being tallied. Although the team raised nearly $12,000 last year, Frost said he wasn’t disappointed with this year’s total.
“A few people couldn’t donate this year” because of the economy, he noted. “I think [the money we raised] shows how we were able to come together as a team.”
To participate in the ride, each cyclist had to raise $250. Twenty-five dollars of that total was supplied by Club Try-Angles owner Gene Geiber, who has sponsored the team for several years now, and who has several family members who have been diagnosed with MS.
Frost noted that the tour had an unusually large number of riders participating this year — so many that his team didn’t start peddling until nearly half an hour after lining up at the starting point at 7:00 a.m. on June 27. Although an unusually stormy June had the team worried that they would be battling rain and lightning strikes on their way up the canyon, Frost said the weather couldn’t have been better — though a few gusts of wind made him wobble a little.
“I started up the canyon and it was so windy I couldn’t ride in a straight line — which is appropriate for a gay team,” he joked. “It was pushing me from side to side.” Still, Frost said he and the team managed to push through the feisty wind, and the ride down the canyon was uneventful. Overall, each team member biked at least 75 miles on Saturday and 40-75 miles on Sunday. The tour, which is not a race, allows riders to bike in loops of 40, 75 or 100 miles each day.
On Saturday night, Frost said he and his teammates had dinner at a local restaurant and went to bed early to prepare themselves for the long ride in the morning. Although most riders ended the tour feeling tired from their workout, Frost said they all left happy.
“Everyone had a great time. There was lots of laughing and eating. It could not have gone smoother,” he said.
To donate to the team, visit tinyurl.com/teamtryangles.