Cyclists to support Africa race
Mountain bikers with a social conscious will gather at the Canmore Nordic Centre Aug. 18 in support of the second annual Africa Bike Race.
The race will raise money to send Kona mountain bikes to Kiprengwe Primary school in Kenya. Last year, the Africa Bike Project bought 203 bicycles for the school.
“Last year we had 40 riders. We hope to triple that this year,” said co-founder Melissa Farahat. “We’re now a part of the Alberta Biking Association circuit, so we’ll have the same categories as them.”
Farahat and Kelly MacVicar helped build a school in the village of Kiprengwe, and wanted to find new ways to stay connected to the community.
“This is the next step for that school. We’ll go from there with other schools,” Farahat said.
They hope to raise $25,000 this year, which would allow them to send 200 more bikes to more schools in Kenya.
“The more the merrier. We want to give as many bikes as possible to the entire community,” Farahat said.
The bikes are given to the schools and Farahat, MacVicar and representatives from Kona will fly to Kenya in October to donate the bikes, assemble them and teach the children basic maintenance. The bikes will stay with the school, which in turn will loan them to the school children. Kiprengwe is 37 kilometres from the nearest centre of Kericho.
Kona is manufacturing special bikes for the project. The AfriKid bike is a low cost bike specifically for children. For every two Afribikes (which cost $130 to make), Kona will donate one bike for free.
The race this year will have elite, expert, sport, novice and youth categories.
Registration will be available at the Africa Bike Project website www.africabikeproject.com.
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