More than 800 riders have registered for this Saturday's 22nd annual American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure Buffalo. Organizers hope to raise at least $394,000.
"With five days left, all routes are still available to ride. With fundraising, we're trending ahead of last year, and this week before the tour is our most important - we usually raise about one-third of our goal this week alone," said tour manager Jill Bakeman.
The Buffalo Tour de Cure, starting and finishing at Niagara County Community College, features pastoral and Lake Ontario-view routes of different lengths for riders of all skill levels. There's something for everyone, from a leisurely 6-mile family route, all the way up to the challenge of the 62.5-mile metric century and 100-mile century rides.
As of Monday, 70 teams and 155 individuals had signed up. Team Great Lakes Health has the largest team in the event, with 72 cyclists. Fifteen first-time teams are in the field, led by Team Praxair, with 31 riders.
Dr. Jeffrey Carrel, a Buffalo podiatrist, will make his 22nd appearance in the event, having ridden in all 21 previous Tour de Cure events.
More than 50 "Red Riders," cyclists of all ages living with diabetes, will also be riding various distances in the June 8 event.
Tour de Cure is a day full of fun and excitement where riders of all levels join forces in the fight to stop diabetes and raise critical funds for research, education and advocacy in support of the American Diabetes Association.
The ADA serves more than 140,000 persons with Type I and II diabetes in Western New York, where approximately 10 percent of the local population suffers from the life-threatening disease. Local case counts exceed the national average and are increasing annually. The ADA estimates that, by 2020, 50 percent of local residents will be living with diabetes.