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The Event

Pallotta Teamworks is the proud sponsor of over thirty charity events, supporting issues from suicide prevention to poverty, from AIDS issues to breast cancer awareness and research.

The California AIDS Ride is Pallotta’s first and flagship event. It is also the longest ride over the longest time. At 560 miles over 7 days, the event travels a quarter the distance of a Tour de France in a third of the time. It is grueling. It is challenging physically, mentally and emotionally. It, and events like it, can also be one of life’s most rewarding experiences.

5:30 a.m., San Francisco California. It’s still dark, and the chill air off the Bay is shocking. Starting at 7:00 a.m. and for almost three hours, 2,500 bicycles roll out of a huge holding facility, spinning down a quarter-mile row of supportive cheering crowds. By the end of mile two they’re climbing out of the Presidio, the first of a hundred or more hills and with eighty-seven miles left to ride today. The sun is out, the air is warming, and the noise of hundreds of bicycles and riders surrounds you. Local police station the stop signs, guiding traffic and waving you through. Bikes pile up five wide and twenty deep at every traffic light as you pass and get passed and pay attention to everything.

Adrenalin is high after the sleepless night, and people laugh, chat, offer good mornings. The joy that is created by the community of the ride makes the coming miles seem bearable, even exciting.

Fifteen miles roll by and you notice a crowd of bikes peeling off the street and pulling into a coffee house, where twenty bikes with rider numbers affixed already lean against a building. Two miles later you hit the first pit stop: fill up water and sports drink bottles, grab half a Cliff Bar and climb back on. Wave at the people directing you back to the route.

You have seventy-four miles to go today, and five hundred and sixty miles left this week.

For information about all Pallotta Teamworks events and to learn how you can participate, visit the Pallotta Teamworks web site at www.pallottateamworks.com.

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