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makeleleroll
02-12-2013, 02:05 PM
I'm a newbie and thinking of doing my first charity ride this year with my company's cycling club... haven't decided on how many miles though (but I'm considering doing a century). I'm deciding between the National Capital Tour de Cure in Reston or Bike MS (supposedly a new route than previous years). I'm strictly looking at the routes and experiences of each event, since both events have great causes. Any thoughts?

Routes:

http://main.diabetes.org/site/TR?fr_id=8619&pg=entry

http://bikedcw.nationalmssociety.org/site/PageServer?pagename=BIKE_DCW_Route_Information

crysb
02-12-2013, 03:09 PM
I can't speak for the Tour de Cure, but Bike MS "Ride the Riverside" (this is the DC-area one) was a very well-organized and well-marked ride. I rode the 60-mile on Saturday and the 44-mile on Sunday last year. This was also my first organized ride, but looking back after doing a few others, I have to say the Bike MS organizers really do go all out to provide great, stocked pit stops with food and mechanical support - and there's a great celebration party afterwards with free pizza, pasta, salad, cake, and beer. Volunteers even provided me with sunscreen when I lost mine. The route is hilly, but there's only a couple of major hills and the rest of it is pretty rolling. Last year's route did involve a few narrow shoulders on the 2nd day, which I hope is what they're changing. Lots of fun, lots of riders, tons of support.

My ride report is here: http://www.crystalbae.com/2012/06/11/bike-ms-2012-ride-report/

bikenurse
02-13-2013, 07:38 AM
Both rides are class acts. I've ridden the TDC in Howard County, MD twice and it was really well run (well provisioned rest stops, nice staff, good food at the end). Haven't ridden it since it's been in Reston. This year TDC is also doing a ride May 18 in Easton (Flat course!). I have a team called the Proteus Herd if anyone wants to join us. I'm riding the century (with my buddy Greenbelt), but most of our team is riding 55 miles. Ben from Proteus will be doing support for the MS ride, so say hi to him if you decide to do that ride!

hozn
02-15-2013, 09:53 PM
I can't speak for the MS ride, but I did the TdC in 2011 in Reston; it was a great experience. I organized a small (8-person) team for my office (which matched our $$ raised) and rode the century with a couple friends/teammates. The ride itself was great -- especially once you get out past Leesburg. And the support was phenomenal -- lots of very well-stocked aid stations. My only negative comment would be that on the team organization front they didn't have a system whereby corporate donation matches could be distributed equally among the team members. But overall I definitely would recommend TdC.

consularrider
02-16-2013, 09:18 AM
I have no experience with the MS rides, but have ridden in the general area on the Indian Head Century and the Total 200. Once you get south of the DC suburban area it's nice riding.

I've been a ride marshal for the last four Reston based TdC (30 and 50 mile routes) and will be doing it again this year. I hope to cover the century route this year. I did a test-ride of that last year with person who does the course planning and it looks like it will be similar this year. I really liked that area for riding, it was the first time I had ridden through Middleburg. The TdC has about three times more elevation gain over the 100 mile routes.

SteveTheTech
03-11-2013, 07:36 AM
I have no experience with the TdC ride but I have been riding Bike MS for the last three years and I have to agree that it is one of the best organized rides in this area. I did that ride as my first century and loved it. The mechanical and SAG support will make sure if your engine is up to the task you will get to the end. They have contests among some of the teams to make the best rest station, it really makes the breaks in riding a lot of fun.

Being a volunteer for the MS society for other events I have met the people behind that ride. They spend almost the whole year mapping and planning this event. This year they are working more closely with OHBC members to map out a slightly better course.

Riding in Southern MD is awesome, the people are nicer the roads are emptier and the scenery is very tranquil.

Best of all, all of the money raised for this ride goes to help people in the DC region who struggle with the often debilitating effects of multiple sclerosis and research into treatment.

If you are looking for a supporting group my team is always looking for new riders. (Looks like our numbers are down but there are still a few months till the ride, last year we had about 40 riders and raised $45,000)
Team Trust (http://main.nationalmssociety.org/site/TR/Bike/DCWBikeEvents?team_id=318712&pg=team&fr_id=19164)