In a few day’s time, I will go race my bike at the biggest stage race in America, the USA Pro Cycling Challenge. Over the course of my six-year professional career I’ve raced two Giro d’Italias, both the Ardennes hilly Classics and the daunting northern Classics, the World Championships, and hundreds of other races. Nothing, however, can compare to the emotion and involvement I have for the event this October 15.
Allow me to digress.
The worst day of my life was March 23, 2003.
My father, Dr. Edward W. King – also familiarly known as Ted – was a prominent orthopaedic surgeon in New England, an avid skier and sailor, a truly brilliant man, and the exemplary pillar of the King family. He woke up that particular morning suffering a stroke. Our lives were immediately thrown into the blender and have been forever changed.
While every day since that fateful date is a challenge, Dad has been piecing his life back together as best he can. The support group around him – spearheaded unequivocally by Mom – is indescribably helpful. One of the best outlets we have found is the Krempels Center, which Dad attends three days per week in Portsmouth, NH. This non-profit organization is aimed at bettering the lives of adults with brain injury whether it by by stroke, traumatic brain injury (TBI), or tumor. In partnership with universities and community volunteers, the Krempels Center offers programs that engage members in meaningful and productive experiences and provides ongoing support and resources to those impacted by brain injury. This community of brain injury survivors as well as the support group built around these individuals is absolutely incredible and unlike anything I’ve witnessed ever before.
I’ve teamed up with Loco’s Cycling and the Krempels Center to create the Krempels King of the Road Challenge, a full day family cycling event (not a race) open to all ages and abilities on October 15. The entire King family will be there, yes Dad included, taking part in the riding events. With music, food (ahem, beer garden), and an enormous expo afterwards, the first annual Krempels King of the Road Challenge promises to be an incredible event.
As a first year event like this, we’re looking for participation across the board. Riders, riders, riders, come one, come all! Again, we stress that this is not a race. This is a fun, family event with three different distances to cater to all abilities and is open to all ages.
Registration for the event is here.
And while it is certainly not required, but if you can create a team and draw one, two, twenty, or fifty or more riders to join your team, that obviously only helps the event. But the event starts with you, the individual, so start by registering today.
My personal fund raising page is found here. If you can’t make the event, your donation of any amount whatsoever is the best, simplest, and most beneficial way you too can be instrumentally involved in the first annual Krempels King of the Road Challenge.
A bit of press for the event here.