I’ve been riding a bike, off and on, since I was about 6 years old. However, my real motivations for getting serious about riding on the road were a) the movie Breaking Away, and b) working at The Bicycling Center, my cousin’s bicycle shop in Thousand Oaks California, during the summer of 1984. While working at the Bicycling Center I learned how to assemble new bicycles from scratch and how to fix and repair bicycles. It was the first time I had a “real” road bike (not a K-Mart special), and from my first weekend there I was participating in rides of 20+ miles several days a week with the Club sponsored by the bike shop. By the end of the summer, I was even leading Sunday morning rides!
After that summer, however, my riding became much more sporadic; though I always had a road bike, I did not ride consistently – only a few times a year.
Flash forward to about 5 years ago – – – my good friend convinced me it was time to really get back into riding and the best way, of course, was to purchase a new road bike. So off to D&Q I went, and next thing I knew, I had a new Scott Speedster with all the accessories, and I was ready to bike again!
I started off riding either alone or with a friend or two, and only 1-2 times per month during that first summer. The next summer, I increased frequency and distance, I was riding (I rode several 40-50 mile rides). I also convinced my wife, Leslie, to buy a new bike, though it was a hybrid, so we could ride together. We went out several times together, but I also was a regular at morning spin classes at the JCC, which did wonders to increase my stamina on my road bike.
This past summer, I rode a lot on my own, with Leslie or with friends, but it was Leslie who got me involved with Team Evesham. One Sunday morning, I went with a friend to Bucks County to ride 55 miles with hills (something I’d never really done before), and while I was there Leslie went on her own to try a ride with Team Evesham. She had such a fabulous experience that by the time I got home that afternoon, she had officially signed us up as members! At my first ride, everyone was so welcoming and friendly, including Dave Bennis and Brad Davis who came right over and introduced themselves, and it was nice seeing a familiar face in Rich Bernstein. I loved riding with the “pack” but, as equally important, I appreciated how safety conscious everyone was, calling out all hazards along the ride and generally looking out for one-another. Within my first week, I was officially welcomed by Sandy Student and found out we both went to the same high school! By the end of my first ride, I was “hooked,” looking forward to my next ride with the team before this one had even finished.
In the 2 months since we’ve joined, Leslie and I have ridden most weekends, including riding the Labor Day ride and the 50-mile Move for Mental Health Ride. Riding with Team Evesham motivated me to “pick up my game” by signing up for my first Century ride — the Foster 100. Knowing that other riders, including Brad, Sandy and Scott Downie, were participating made the decision easy. I am proud that this past weekend, at age 52, I was able to complete my first Century…thanks Team Evesham!