“Dougie Style Mustache” Contest

We are celebrating the ten year anniversary of the 50 Mile Ride for Rwanda this year! As I am sure many of you know, our founder, the heavily mustached Doug started this event on his 50th birthday (hence the 50 mile distance) and this year he is turning 60!

And we figure what better way to celebrate than have a mustache contest!

We have partnered with Over The Hump Mountain Bike Racing Series to help raise additional funds for our charity partners and celebrate all of Doug’s contributions to this cause.

Over The Hump will be donating $1.00 for every “Dougie Style” Mustache counted on the day of the ride (up to 1500).

On top of that, anyone who posts a photo to Facebook or Instagram of their mustache and tags it with #DougieStyleMTB will be eligible to win a free entry to an Over The Hump event. And they will be giving away 10!!!

Here are the rules:

1. Everyone is eligible!! Riders, spectators, men, women, kids, ect.
2. Your mustache must stay affixed all day. Feel free to get creative with this. Grow one, draw one on, glue it, tattoo it (maybe not the best option). As long as it stays for the day it counts.
3. You can only be counted once.
4. It HAS to be a “Dougie Style mustache”. See the photo.
5. Post a photo to Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #DougieStyleMTB to be entered to win a free entry into an Over The Hump event.

Please stop by the rider check in booth to have your mustache counted.

720 Utility Bikes to Eritrea This Year

Thanks to YOUR participation as a rider, sponsor, donor, or volunteer – we will be able to deliver 720 utility bikes into the African country of Eritrea this year!

Our friends at Team Africa Rising have been working closely with the Eritrean Commission of Sport, the Cycling Federation, UNDP, the Ministry of Education and Anthony Fitzhenry founder of Qhubeka. Qhubeka is part of World Bicycle Relief (WBR), a global non-profit dedicated to advancing education, health and economic opportunities by providing simple, sustainable transportation through the Power of Bicycles. A container load of WBR “Charger” utility bikes will ship shortly after this year’s 50MR with a landing in Eritrea sometime in June 2016. Local mechanics in Eritrea will then begin assembling the bikes. Proceeds from our 10th Annual 50 Mile ride, along with Qhubeka’s contributions, will enable us to partner together to deliver 720 bikes into Eritrea this year. We have identified a mechanic who will travel to the WBR/Qhubeka assembly plant in Zimbabwe for a couple of weeks of training. We are looking at about 10-15 mechanics to assemble the bikes using some youth from the UNDP Youth Development program (jobs for young adults) along with the Eritrean Trade Workers Union. Both groups are in dire need of work and this will enable them to have a “job” assembling the bikes over a couple of months.

This is a significant undertaking for Qhubeka, World Bicycle Relief and the Eritrean parties with the help of the 50MR. This is a partnership we hope will continue to grow to produce a full time assembly plant in Eritrea. THANK YOU for helping us make a difference in the world for 720 young students in Eritrea. They will now have a pathway to education, giving them a “hand up” to a better life.

New Routes for 2016

Applied Medical is one of the fastest growing companies in Southern California, and a leading provider of breakthrough technologies for minimally invasive and general surgery. They are also the proud hosts of our 2016 10th Annual 50 Mile Ride for Rwanda. Our start, finish, and post-ride party will take place at their newest facility (formerly Cox Communications) located at 29947 Avenida De Las Banderas, Rancho Santa Margarita CA.

Our 50MR trail team is super excited about our new routes this year. We’ve kept some of the same 50MR trails (O’Neill, Caspers, Tijeras, Arroyo Trabuco), but we’ve added some fun new trails that our locals LOVE – including Vista Trail in O’Neill Park, and Waterworks in the Arroyo. Check out our interactive TRAIL MAP (blue represents the 25/50 mile routes, yellow represents the 10 mile route). Or you can CLICK HERE FOR 50MR STRAVA route. It’s unanimous – the new trails are a blast to ride, and you’re going to have an awesome day for an awesome cause!

Grand Prize Bike – Pivot Cycles

We are totally excited to announce that Pivot Cycles is our Grand Prize Bike Sponsor for this year’s event.

Pivot Cycles bikes are born from decades of industry experience and bred from a heritage of racing. They’ve been revolutionizing the high-performance mountain bike world ever since they were introduced in 2007. Founder Chris Cocalis worked the floor in bike shops, raced BMX professionally, built bikes by hand, and saw Titus Cycles to success before turning his full efforts to Pivot Cycles.

The full Pivot line is developed in-house at their headquarters in Tempe, AZ – where they push frame design and innovation to their furthest limits. Pivot’s goal is simply to build the best-performing cycling products in the world. And now you have a chance to own one! Depending on the frame you choose, you could win a bike valued at over $6000! All you have to do is enter our Grand Prize Raffle and wait for your lucky number to be called*.

Winner of the Grand Prize Raffle will get to pick the frame of their choice from Pivot’s amazing lineup, including:

XC/TrailLES hardtail carbon (comes with their patented Swinger dropout system if you want to build an amazing single-speed), LES 27.5 carbon, LES Fat (the world’s most versatile big-tire machine), Mach 429SL carbon (full suspension race-ready machine), Mach 4 carbon (27.5 wheels).

Enduro/TrailMach 429 Trail (with new mid-travel trail linkage design), Mach 5.7 carbon (26”), NEW Mach 6 carbon (all new rear triangle and linkage provides amazing stiffness).

Dirt/Jump/ParkPoint (high grade chromoly steel), M4X (do-it-all bike for jumps, slalom, pump track).

Gravel/CX/RoadVault (the ultimate next-generation CX machine).

On behalf of our entire 50 Mile Ride planning team, we extend a huge thank you to Pivot Cycles for their generous donation. And we’re also very grateful to Shimano, Fox Racing Shox, and Derek Melberg (Ride Rep Group) for putting this amazing Grand Prize Bike together!

*Must be present to win at the Grand Prize raffle on event day.


Pledge Drive – Can You Help Us?


Funds used in this year’s event will support two non-profits in Africa
:  World Bicycle Relief and Team Africa Rising.  You are helping to provide life-changing bicycles to school children in Africa who would otherwise have no access to education.  Walking 10 to 15 kilometers each way to school is not an option – but a bicycle allows the child the opportunity to attend school and still get back in time to help on the family farm.  We are also continuing our support of Team Africa Rising, helping them reach their goal to one day field an all-African team in the Tour de France.

You can help us reach our fundraising goal by creating a PLEDGE PAGE.  Once your pledge page is set up, simply send a link to your family, friends, and co-workers.  Then sit back and watch the money roll in!  (At least, that’s what we hope)  Thank you for helping us change lives both here and in Africa.  You are making a difference!

Team Rwanda Wins Tour du Rwanda

Team Rwanda wins the Tour du Rwanda for the second year in a row!

(Excerpts from the New Times Rwanda publication):
After Valens Ndayisenga’s historic win last year in the UCI Africa 2.2 Tour du Rwanda cycling race, Rwandans have found a new champion in Jean-Bosco Nsengimana. The young rider from Rubavu on shores of Lake Kivu, stood out throughout the week by winning three stages and wearing the yellow jersey from first to the last day. Like Ndayisenga, Nsengimana, 22, recorded the first major victory of his young career after clocking 23:54:50 in the seven-stage race that covered a total distance of 928.4 kilometers.

Rwandans dominated the entire race since the first day, leaving no chance to their opponents from Eritrea, Morocco, France, South Africa and elsewhere.

General Classification:
1. Jean-Bosco Nsengimana (Team Karisimbi) 23:54:50
2. Joseph Areruya (Team Akagera) 23h56:35
3. Camera Hakuzimana (Team Muhabura) 2’45”
4. Eyob Metkel (Eritrea) 3’02”
5. Patrick Byukusenge (Team Karisimbi) 3’04”

Grand Prize Winner Gets New Tallboy

Kimberlee, John and family

Kimberlee, John and family

grand prize john kim derek

Winners Kimberlee and John, and Prize Coordinator Derek Melberg

Congratulations once again to Kimberlee Staff, the happy and proud winner of our 2015 Grand Prize Santa Cruz bike.  Not only is Kimberlee happy and proud, she is also GENEROUS – as she gave this new bike to her husband John.  (Kim had recently purchased a Santa Cruz 5010 for herself, so she generously shared her Grand Prize with her hubby.)  John, Kimberlee and family recently picked up their new Tallboy at the awesome new Shimano hospitality center in Irvine.  A big thank you to Derek Melberg from Ride Rep Group, who completed the bike build and coordinated all the bike components (Shimano), frame (Santa Cruz), and fork (Fox).

You can have a chance to win an awesome new bike too!  All you have to do is participate in our 2016 event (last Saturday in April 2016), purchase some Grand Prize raffle tickets – then sit back and wait for your number to be called!

Bike Distribution in Musanze

bike distribution musanze6

Thank you to all who participate in our 50 Mile Ride for Rwanda. You are creating a future and a hope for a new generation in Rwanda. In May 2015, 80 bicycles were distributed to school children in the Musanze District near the Africa Rising Cycling Center. Message from Kim Coats, Director of Marketing for the Team: “We gave 40 bikes to Kabara School and 40 bikes to Kagano School children to help with their daily commute. Thanks CHT, Musanze District and FERWACY for your support…AND the 50 Mile Ride for Rwanda which raised the money for these bikes!”

bike distribution musanze7These Musanze bikes were made possible by a portion of the proceeds of our 2013 8th annual Rwanda Ride.  In 2014, proceeds of our 9th annual Rwanda Ride enabled 220 bikes to be distributed to schoolchildren in South Africa.  And this year, our 9th annual event will result in 220 bikes heading to Eritrea, where rural children who live too far to walk to school will now be able to get there by bike.  And these kids will have the opportunity to receive an education that would otherwise have been impossible.

Once again, our 50 Mile Ride Team says “THANK YOU” to all participants, supporters, and volunteers.  Way to go!

Record crowd, record fundraising, record RAIN


kimberlee with poster

Our 9th Annual 50 Mile Ride for Rwanda is now “in the record books”.  Thanks to the support of our riders, sponsors, volunteers, and vendors – we achieved new records in every category.  Our goal was 1000 riders this year, and we had 1292 registered fun-loving riders.  Our “stretch goal” was to raise $150,000 for our Rwanda non-profits, and we raised over $161,000 (including our generous 15% match from Allstate Insurance).  Our goal was “no rain”, and we exceeded that goal by one perfectly imperfect-timed rain storm right in the middle of our prize raffle.  Oh well.  At least the weather and the trails were perfect during the ride itself.  Congratulations to Kimberlee Staff, the super-excited winner of our Grand Prize Santa Cruz bike.  She couldn’t stop smiling or shaking, and it wasn’t from the cold!  THANK YOU ALL, for sharing in an epic day for an epic cause that will have a life-changing impact for students, care-givers and athletes in Africa.  Well done.