The weekend started with pre-registration at Outback Steakhouse where we all gathered and participants could pick up their registration packets so they would not have to find a place for all the great stuff from the bags during the morning of the ride!
It started warming up a bit and registration was smooth and orderly as people started showing up and everyone got suited up and ready for a great ride.
The 50 mile ride took off at around 830am with a huge crowd of cyclists.
The 25 miler took off at 915am and the 10 miler left at around 10am. All of the routes were very difficult with nonstop hills which challenged every single participant. There were several hand cycles and trikes on the road which were propelled by the bodies and hearts of Ataxian Athletes one of which was Sam Bode who trained for months to be able to complete this ride alongside her many friends and supporters.
Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba's Italian Grill, and Bonefish Grill were there to spoil us with tasty treats after a tough ride.
The afternoon also included something for everyone with race cars, fire engines, clowns, face painting and massage therapy.
Once again, thank You to our generous sponsors!
Presenting Sponsor: Outback Steakhouse
Headline Sponsors: Carrabba's Italian Grill and Bonefish
Rest Stop Sponsors: Hank's Beverages, Allied Beverage,
F&F Mechanical, and Sunbelt Coastal Produce.
Special thanks to Bikesport, Tri-County Bikes and Spinners for event SAG
Since FARA's incorporation in 1998, participation in events like Ride Ataxia have supported research resulting in the fundamental understanding of what causes Friedreich's ataxia. While the development of treatments is a labor intensive and costly process, FARA prides itself on facilitating this important work with strategic funding and collaboration. Specifically, FARA has awarded 8 research grants from Ride Ataxia fundraising over the past 4 years, totaling $960,000 in funding for research. All of these grants have supported research with a direct link to advancing treatments; testing drugs in the laboratory, developing cell models that allow us to discover and test new compounds, clinical research such as testing and validating new biomarkers and clinical measures and trials. The two most recent grants were just awarded this month. One is for a clinical trial, a pilot study of a drug that has shown encouraging results in laboratory tests, and the other is for the development of a high throughput screening assay that is needed to discover new drugs in the fight against Friedreich's ataxia.