Thursday, September 15, 2011

Race Report

First off, many thanks to the partners who gave us the chance to stay in the race hotel! Packet pickup, race shuttles, staff being cool with bikes wheeling through the fancy lobby... we had no worries!  It was really worth it in relaxation.  I had a nice space to run through my six checklists of gear.

Race morning- time trial start as the sun rises.  

Thank you also to our incredibly generous donors:  we have raised over $921 for our causes (with more still to come!).  This is going to be split between Episcopal Relief and Development for their general fund, and Concerns of Police Survivors.  ER-D will use our donations to help people in our country- like people from St. Luke’s in Oregon who recovered from a tsunami to people in Vermont who are still assessing their post-flooding needs- and people internationally through programs like Nets for Life which gives mosquito nets to families so they can sleep without fear of malaria-bearing insects. 

Our donation to Concerns of Police Survivors is dedicated to the family of Ofc. Chris Kilcullen who was killed in the line of duty on April 22.  He was shot during a traffic stop.  Since that time, a number of St. Mary’s families have shared their connection to the police force- a neighbor, a son, an officer who helped out in a difficult situation- and the community consensus was that this situation was above any individual politics- this was about helping out our neighbors and letting our public servants know that they do have people here who care about them as human beings.  I think we are blessed with a fantastic police department here in Eugene.  So far, in every dealing I’ve had with them, I’ve found them to be professional and competent and possessed of a good sense of humor… even though I’m officially sworn as a chaplain to Lane County Sherriff’s!  We’re very glad to be able to give a little to the cause to let our officers know their neighbors care.  This donation will help cover the cost of sending the Kilcullen family to Washington, DC next May to attend the National Police Week C.O.P.S. Survivor’s Conference.  We hope it helps them in their ongoing healing. 

Showing off the Ofc. Kilcullen Bracelet, surrounded by Team in Training People.  The Bethesda Firefighter is just out of the frame of this shot.  
Ultimately, the best part of the race wasn't the sheer speed of the course (even though I love riding my bike really fast).  It was meeting all the other people and talking to all those doing the race for a cause.  Team in Training is the biggest cause, but a good number of people were fundraising for the Wounded Warrior Project dedicated to helping wounded military vets.  The thin blue line bracelet I was wearing in honor of Ofc. Chris Kilcullen of the Eugene PD was noticed and remarked on by a lot of law enforcement folks- there were a lot of good wishes for our Eugene guys!  I got to talk up Episcopal Relief and Development a bit, and it was neat to hear people say they had been looking for a cause like that that helped people internationally AND domestically.  On the bike course, I saw a competitor without legs pedaling away on specialty legs on his bike.  Guys like that are such a great testament to human optimism!  I love how people strike up random conversations- who you are, where are you from, why are you racing.  As I headed to the chute, a man wearing a Eugene Ducks t-shirt saw my hat, and started cheering for Eugene, and he got the crowd going for this by-then-very-hot-and-overheating Eugene girl.  He and his wife sought me and M out after the race and we had a nice chat.  Races just seem to bring together a ton of really nice people who like to help others out.  

So here you go:  SUNDAY MORNING.  Race Report.  

First thing tomorrow.  

No comments: