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Team CarboRocket

28 Feb

Do you ever start something and then ask yourself, “what the hell was I thinking?” Well, that’s what I’ve asking myself about team CarboRocket . Truth be told I had no idea what I was getting into. After reading over 150 stories from people all over the world I feel very tiny, as in muy miniscule. Definitely NOT worthy of being the repository for so many compelling stories from such amazing people.

It’s been incredibly difficult trying to decide on just 10 team members. I’ve read and re-read every submission multiple times and eventually narrowed down the finalists to 30. My wife, Tasha, told me I needed to have a system in place to make the final selection as fair as possible since all the stories were so good. Fair, in the loosest sense of the word as the results are still pretty subjective but at least I can say I used some sort of “system” in the process.

Here’s my system: I wanted potential team members to submit to me in 150 words or less 3 things; a story, a goal and challenges or obstacles. I then assigned a point value for each of those 3 things 1, 2 or 3 with 3 being the highest. I tallied the scores of each submission to determine the top 10.

Yes, it is possible to have a good story and a good goal and be weak on the obstacle or challenge score and still do well. So, a seemingly more deserving individual may fall short if they didn’t have a good goal or a good story score. This system helped, sort of. I still had over 12 men with equal qualifying scores so it came down to a dart throw on my part for the men.

Here is Team CarboRocket for 2010 in no particular order and 5 men and 5 women:

  1. Drew Darnel
  2. Christine McBride
  3. David Visschedyk
  4. Lisa Serao
  5. Jeremiah Prater
  6. Mary Reynolds
  7. Rob Thompson
  8. Jen Joy
  9. Brett Ringger
  10. Sheryl Sturgess

If you applied and your name isn’t listed above don’t be too put out. It really did come down to a dart throw. Also, spots may open if riders are unable to be contributing team members.

Wow, I’m exhausted. I will get team bios and blog up later this week. If your name isn’t on the list and you applied shoot me an email and I’ll send you details on how you can still be involved, It’ll be worth your while.

Thanks so much to everyone who took the time to share their story. It’s been an honor to read them all.

I’ll be emailing the team in a day or two with details, right now I need some breakfast.

Lastly, huge thanks to Fatcyclist, Ibis Cycles, Ritchey and Bingham Cyclery for hopping on board and helping sponsor the team!


16 Feb

In just a couple days I’ve received over 100 stories (thanks for spreading the word Fatty!) from folks around the world who claim to be ordinary. Truth be told they are all far from ordinary. I’ve read every single one of them over the long weekend and have now responded to everyone that submitted something prior to today. I’ll get back to everyone, eventually.

I thought I’d share a couple of the stories to give you an idea of who our future team riders are, I’m keeping them anonymous for now.

As an eight year old I lost my right leg to cancer. In 2006, I rode 6580km across Canada to raise money for kids with cancer. I can ride forever, but slowly.This year that’s changing. I will no longer be the tortoise, but the hare (I do like to nap). I’m starting racing. Of course, I only have half the “engine” of a regular racer, but I have more desire and determination.I’ve raced once; I finished 1201 of 1204. No excuses; results must improve. I’m competing in the same race, and will ride ‘cross in the fall. I will be in the top 900 this year, and in the top 75% in ‘cross. I won’t ever win, I can guarantee that. But I’ll become a smart racer, who will fight like hell for every position and love every agonizing moment.

And this:

I weighed 325 pounds last January. I weigh 268 today. Not the biggest person in the world but big enough. In November, I will complete a 1/2 Ironman. After suffering through years of depression and struggling with suicidal tendencies, I have come along way. Far enough that I am now EXCITED to live and EXCITED to be as healthy as I can be. I am not pursuing these things for the sake of accomplishment. I am doing this for life. I am doing this to prove that mental illness doesn’t have to win. That being “morbidly obese” doesn’t meen death. I am doing this for my wife and son – so that I live to see them grow old and so that we can grow old together.I am 30 years old, morbidly obese and overcoming clinical depression but seeking the journey of a lifetime.A 1/2 Ironman is hard enough for a fit man. It is near impossible for someone of my size. Losing another 75-90 pounds will not only be crucial, it is vital to the accomplishment.

I need to go back and edit part of the “press release” for the team. The part where I say, “We will be there when you fall down, first to laugh at you and then give you a hand up, a dusting off and a gentle push onward.” I won’t be laughing, I’ll be cheering, jumping up and down and making a complete fool of myself.

What’s crazy is that all of the submissions are compelling. I have no idea how to get to just 10 team members.

Team CarboRocket

11 Feb
Team CarboRocket is looking for a few good, ordinary folks who are on the verge of doing something extraordinary. You may not even know what that extraordinary thing is yet, but you can feel it burning inside of you.  Hopefully, you already enjoy cycling, be it on the road or mountain.

Team membership is open to anyone who’s interested in doing something big. You may be a total novice or a seasoned veteran, we care not.  What we do care about is that — whatever your extraordinary goal may be — there is an enormous gap between where you are now and achieving that goal.  Maybe you are overweight. Maybe you have never ridden even a tenth the distance you’re hoping to ride. Maybe you’re missing a limb or two.  Whatever hurdle you have to reaching your goal should make you dig very deep.

If this isn’t clear here’s an example:  You are currently an expert level mountain biker with a resume stacked with impressive finishes and maybe even some sponsors and you want to finish the Leadville 100 mountain bike race because you’ve never done it.  Sorry, not digging deep enough, no need to apply.

If, however, you’re a sport-level mountain biker and you’ve been thinking that the Great Divide Race is a little bit too short and you think it’s about time somebody rides from Canada to Mexico and then back, well yeah. We’d like to hear more.

What’s in it for you?  You will be supported and sponsored by none other than Ibis Cycles in conjunction with Bingham Cyclery, CarboRocket sports drink, Ritchey components and the ever humble  We can’t divulge exactly what awesome deals and swag you will be getting from each of these sponsors because we are still trying to figure out what Fatty is contributing. Maybe he’ll publish your stories. Maybe he’ll give you his super-secret recipe for quiche. It’s hard to say for sure. But we will say that you will like being sponsored by us.  A lot.

What’s in it for us?  We love a good story and we want to follow yours, from ordinary to extraordinary. We will be there when you fall down, first, to laugh at you and then give you a hand up, a dusting off and a gentle push onward.  You will keep us apprised of your progress and ultimately your attempt at completing your extraordinary goal by updating your story at regular intervals on the team blog.

We want at least half the team to be women and total team members to be 10.  We don’t want your entire story just yet, only 150 words or less.  You need to tell us a compelling snippet of your story including who you are, what extraordinary thing it is you want to accomplish and why it will be so challenging. Email your 150 words to The sponsors will then pick 10 people with the most compelling stories to make up the Team.

And then we’ll come up with a cool secret handshake or something.  We look forward to hearing your outrageously cool idea. Oh yeah, there is a one week deadline for consideration.  You have until February 19, Midnight to submit your snippet.
Team CarboRocket