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2009 Rotary Lake Okeechobee Ride Has Record Riders

This year’s Okeechobee Rotary Club’s annual Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail (L.O.S.T.) charity bike ride was the biggest ever, organizer, Jim McInnes, said Saturday morning. More than 150 riders signed up for the event. It was the best year ever for pre-registrations, he added.

(We’d like to think we helped with this. Several riders said they downloaded the registration form we had posted with this story. The story received more than 300 hits.)

The weather this morning was just about perfect, except for a wind that was gusting as high as 30 mph from the south. Fortunately, the ride started at the northwest corner of the lake, so riders hit the headwind early enough that they weren’t tempted to ride too far for their abilities.

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Here’s a video of the start of the ride.

4 comments to 2009 Rotary Lake Okeechobee Ride Has Record Riders

  • Team G4S Wackenhut did the ride backwards. We stared in Port Mayaca and rode north to the starting line. We’re in training for the MS 150 from Miami to Key Largo and back. You should sponsor my ride.

    We did the first 20 miles at better than 22 mph. We were really flying thanks to the tailwind. My heart rate was never more than 150 bpm even though we were cruising at 26mph for miles at a time.

    On the way back, it was tough to hit 14 mph and my heart rate was pegged at 175.

    My total distance was 56.63 miles with an average speed of just 15.1 mph. I was hoping to see an average of 17mph. Still, given the wind, I really can’t complain.

    The Rotary Club did a fine job of supporting the riders. I was happy to pay the registration fee even though I didn’t do their ride. The extra water supply on the way south was well worth the price of admission.

    I really want to see this ride grow. It could easily draw from South Florida as well as Tampa and Orlando. They should hire you to do promotion. There is no reason why 300 cyclists would be out of the question. Or 500 as it grows. (Except, maybe, lodging. Someone should build a nice, cheap hotel at the north end of the Lake.)

    Cheers,
    Matt

  • Jim McInnes, the ride organizer, said they plan to hold two rides a year when they get 300 riders and 50 sponsors on line.

    I’d be a lousy promoter. You’ve seen how much I like trying to organize the Full Moon Rides.

    Okeechobee has a lot more places to stay than you might think.

    Check out my review of the Scottish Inns.

  • Dawn

    I was surprised to see the riders without helmets. I can’t imagine an organized ride that doesn’t require them!

  • Dawn,

    The Rotary Club registration form says that “certified bicycle helmets are required.”

    I’m a helmet advocate for good reason, but I don’t know that I’ve ever seen an organized ride yank a rider because they didn’t have a helmet.

    In fact, I KNOW I’ve never seen them yank a rider for being a jerk, riding over the yellow line into oncoming traffic, wearing headphones or blowing stop signs, which is one reason I don’t participate in a lot of organized rides.

    In their defense, weak as it is for the reason in the link, a lot of the helmetless riders were locals who generally ride less than four or five miles at a time on beach cruisers.

    A lot of pictures were taken at the beginning, end and rest stops where the riders may have taken their helmets off.