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Bike Bonanza: Tour des Chutes, Deschutes Dash, CCC and Nats 

Breaking away, Central Oregon style, at the CCC.For bike lovers, this is sensory overload season. The wildflowers are ablaze along Sector 16, there is a

Breaking away, Central Oregon style, at the CCC.For bike lovers, this is sensory overload season. The wildflowers are ablaze along Sector 16, there is a century ride to choose any weekend, and the Central Oregon Crit Series ( is in full swing on Wednesday nights in Northwest Crossing...and it only gets worse.


The fifth-annual Tour Deschutes was a huge, hot hit on Saturday with over 1,000 people riding to raise awareness and money for the Lance Armstrong Foundation and the St. Charles Cancer Survivorship Program. "At the finish line, cancer survivors go through a special chute and receive a yellow rose. It was amazing to see how many people went through that chute and the community support for (event founder) Gary Bonacker and the event," said 45-mile ride participant Suzie Miller. "My Dad died of lung cancer from all the smog in Southern California and I have a picture of us riding together on my bike. Whenever the going gets tough, I ask Dad to help me kick it in."


This past weekend was the fifth anniversary of another event that has also made it big in Central Oregon-the Deschutes Dash, a weekend full of triathlons, duathlons, and runs that attracted more than 700 racers. The Deschutes Dash and the Fresh Air Sports multisport club ( are the creation of Gina Miller. I met with Gina over a cup of tea very shortly after she moved to Bend in 2001 to discuss her ideas for a club offering coaching services, clinics, and events. It has been exciting to see her dreams become reality.


It doesn't get any better than this for Central Oregon cycling aficionados (other than an actual week in the Alps, pre-riding Tour stages and sipping fine Bordeaux at roadside cafes). I took a sneak peek into the upcoming week on the Palm Pilot of a typical Bend bike nut:

Tuesday, July 21

* Set alarm for 3am to fire up espresso machine

* 3:30am-8:30am: Stage 16 TdF-Martigny-Bourg Saint Maurice (Live coverage on Versus)

* Paceline to Deschutes County Fairgrounds for start

* 11:00am: Stage 1 CCC- Smith Rock Road Race

* Ride to Big Sky Sports Park for finish

* Massage

* Pasta

* Repack hubs

Wednesday, July 22

* Espresso machine

* 3:30am-8:30am: Stage 17 TdF- Bourg Saint Maurice - La Grand Bornand

* Ride directly to Sisters and climb Three Creeks Road to catch the finish 10:00am: Stage 2 CCC- Three Creeks Road Race

* Ride home

* Massage

* Pasta

* Tighten headset and bottom bracket

Thursday, July 23

* Espresso machine

* 5:30am-9:00am: Stage 18 TdF- Annecy

* 10:00am: Stage 3 CCC- Skyliner Time Trial

* TT practice-Channel Alberto Contador and Taylor Phinney while counting the potholes

* Massage

* Pasta

* Install new titanium bolts

Friday, July 24

* Espresso machine

* 5:30-8:30am: Stage 19 TdF- Bourgoin Jallieu - Aubenas

* Hammer up to Mt Bachelor and ride the course backwards

* 10:00am: Stage 4 CCC- Cascade Lakes Road Race

* Massage

* Pasta

* True Wheels

Saturday, July 25

* Espresso machine

* 4:00am-8:30am: Stage 19 TdF-Montelimar-Mont Ventoux

* LSD ride, at least 100 miles

* Rehydrate with Cytomax

* 5:45pm: Stage 5 CCC-Downtown Criterium

* Eat at 900 Wall while watching the action

* Drink beer or French wine and rehash the tour with buddies

Sunday, July 26

* Espresso Machine

* 4:30am-9:00am: Stage 20 TdF-Montereau Fault Yonne, Paris (Champes Elysees)

* Awbrey Butte Hill Repeats

* 1:00pm: Stage 6 CCC-Awbrey Butte Circuit Race

* Massage

* Pasta

* Wax chain

Monday, July 27

* Rest Day

* Sleep in and read back issues of Velo News

* Get ready to do it all again for the 2009 National Road Cycling Championships in Bend July 28-August 2.

Don't forget to contact Renee Mansour, the volunteer coordinator for the Cascade Cycling Classic and the National Championship, at, 541-771-1094. Volunteer positions include check-in helper, car driver, crossing guard, floater, marshal, sweep driver and start/finish set-up/breakdown. If you are interested in hosting athletes for either or both of these great events please contact the host housing coordinator, Taylor Leach, at, or 541-633-9776. Athletes usually arrive a day before the race and leave the day after. As a host your only obligation is to open up your home to as many athletes as you would like, allow them access to your kitchen and provide a safe place to store their bikes. Many hosts enjoy friendships that last long after the bike grease has faded.

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