Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Adventure Team Challenge Colorado Encourages Athlete Cooperation

By Richard Rhinehart

Eagle, Colorado, September 13, 2017 – Adaptive and able-bodied athletes from across the United States will gather in Eagle September 14 for national non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports’ annual Adventure Team Challenge. Ten teams of athletes will complete three outdoor sporting stages beginning September 15 at the rustic Rancho del Rio resort along the Colorado River northeast of this small mountain community.

Hand cyclists in 2015

Hand cyclists prepare for a long descent to the Colorado River at the 2015 Adventure Team Challenge Colorado. Photograph © Vance Jacobs 2015

Directed by experienced adventure sports athletes and event managers Billy and Helene Mattison of Vail, the Challenge is unique in that each participating team of five athletes includes two adaptive athletes – one being a wheelchair user. Teams quickly join together in the spirited competition, which includes rafting the Colorado River, off-road cycling on rocky single and double-track trails, climbing and rappelling on granite rock outcroppings, and orienteering through the Gore Canyon region.

At each Adventure Team Challenge, Billy Mattison informs the competitors that an “adventure” is an “unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity,” often with an uncertain outcome. Such adventures can bond together the participants, showing the able-bodied athletes the remarkable athletic capabilities of their adaptive colleagues, while encouraging the adaptive athletes to seek out additional outdoor sports activities following the conclusion.

Athletes at the Colorado River

Athletes at the 2015 Adventure Team Challenge northeast of Eagle, Colorado reach the Colorado River and the rafting stage of the event. Photograph © Vance Jacobs 2015

Past Challenges have included paraplegic and quadriplegic athletes, amputee athletes, blind athletes and athletes living with Post Traumatic Stress and Traumatic Brain Injuries. Many of these athletes are military veterans who were injured in their service to their nation. Others are civilians, who through accidents and illness, now live with disabilities.

Although the participating Colorado athletes will be familiar with the mountain terrain and mile-high altitude, athletes arriving from Massachusetts, Virginia, California, Connecticut and other low-altitude states will need to adjust to the thin air of the Gore Mountains. For these athletes, the 6,000 to 8,000-foot elevations may prove as challenging as the technical bicycling trails and the churning Colorado River rapids.

Teamwork is critical to a successful completion, as all team members must undertake each stage together. Adapting technology to assist in traversing the landscape, as well as determining a safe and efficient course and cooperating to use each member’s skills and knowledge can save hours in the competition. All teams have successfully completed the Challenge in past years, both at the Gore Range site and at high desert locations west of Grand Junction, Colorado.

Athletes at the 2015 Challenge walk along a creek

Terrain at the Adventure Team Challenge Colorado varies, and athletes sometimes have to get wet. Photograph © Vance Jacobs 2015

Rancho del Rio has hosted numerous Challenges in the past, beginning with the inaugural 2007 event. The fishing and water sports resort is remote, with no cellular telephone signal reaching the deep canyon. This is fine with the Mattisons, who see the region’s remoteness to be beneficial, allowing athletes to concentrate on enjoying the wild terrain and appreciating the Gore Range’s mountain beauty. Athletes and volunteers at the Challenge leave the Internet and outside world behind and learn more about themselves and their fellow athletes.

At the event’s conclusion on September 17, athletes who came together as strangers three days earlier depart as close friends. Many athletes will keep in touch in the coming months and years, providing mutual support networks, as well as encouraging other adaptive athletes to take on the adventure of challenging outdoor sports.

The 2017 Adventure Team Challenge Colorado from World T.E.A.M. Sports is supported through sponsorship and partner support from American Portfolios Financial Services, Benson Botsford LLC, Cannondale, Devens Recycling Center, Pearl Meyer & Partners, LLC, Penske Truck Rental, Sheet Metal Union Local 105, and Timberline Tours.

Team members work together in 2015

Close cooperation between team members is critical for success at the annual Adventure Team Challenge Colorado. Photograph © Vance Jacobs 2015

Capital One Bank Presenting Sponsor for 2016 Face of America Ride

By Richard Rhinehart

Holbrook, New York, February 19, 2016 – Virginia-based Capital One Bank is returning this April 22-24 as presenting sponsor for national non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports’ inclusive Face of America bicycle and hand cycle ride honoring injured military veterans.

Capital One Team 2015 Face of America

The 2015 Capital One Team at the Face of America. Photograph by Van Brinson.

The annual non-competitive ride is anticipated to attract 650 military and civilian participants, including 160 injured athletes from across the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada and Western Europe. Riders will select from two routes this April, the classic 110 mile, two-day route from the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia to the historic battlefields of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and the new 120-mile, two-day northern route from Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.

“Capital One values the service of veterans and their family members,” said Karl Werwath, Managing Vice President, Commercial Banking, Capital One. “As a longstanding supporter of our military, we are proud to once again partner with World T.E.A.M. Sports to honor the sacrifices of our service men and women and support the Face of America ride.”

Injured veterans 2015 Face of America.

The 2015 Face of America ride included more than 130 injured veterans. In 2016, 160 veterans are anticipated. World T.E.A.M. Sports photograph.

Held annually since 2006, Face of America offers an opportunity for participating riders to supportively work together to overcome challenges. With able-bodied athletes riding alongside adaptive athletes, the long journey over city streets, scenic country lanes and historic highways allows all athletes to overcome barriers and to work together as teams.

Participating injured athletes include veterans and civilians with amputations, paralysis, Post-Traumatic Stress, Traumatic Brain Injuries, blindness, and loss of hearing. For these athletes, the ride provides an opportunity to meet other adaptive athletes and create strong supportive networks. Each year, Face of America includes athletes who are returning for their second, third or greater ride, along with first-time athletes, many of whom have not previously ridden long distances.

Serving as presenting sponsor for Face of America since 2012, Capital One Bank also hosts one of the event’s largest participating teams. Colleagues from throughout the mid-Atlantic region join together in support of the ride, with many riding bicycles with the active duty military, injured veterans and civilians and others serving as volunteers.

An able-bodied rider provides assistance in 2015.

Able-bodied riders often provide assistance to injured veterans at Face of America. World T.E.A.M. Sports photograph.

World T.E.A.M. Sports is proud to once again partner with Capital One Bank in presenting the Face of America,” said Van Brinson, CEO and President. “This ride has become a signature event for our organization and we look forward to it every year. Having a sponsor such as Capital One return each year allows us to continue our mission of ‘Changing Lives through Sports’ and we appreciate their support.”

Presented by Capital One Bank, Face of America is supported through sponsorship from American Portfolios Financial Services, Booz Allen Hamilton, Benson Botsford LLC, Brioni, Devens Recycling Center, Freshbikes, Penske Truck Rental, Sila Solutions Group, SUBWAY of the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Three Wire Systems, Vedder Price, and Veteran Corps of America. Additional sponsorship support is forthcoming.

About Capital One Bank
Capital One Financial Corporation, headquartered in McLean, Virginia, is a Fortune 500 company with approximately 900 branch locations primarily in New York, New Jersey, Texas, Louisiana, Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. Its subsidiaries, which include Capital One, N.A., and Capital One Bank (USA), N. A., offer a broad spectrum of financial products and services to consumers, small businesses and commercial clients. We apply the same principles of innovation, collaboration and empowerment in our commitment to our communities across the country that we do in our business. We recognize that helping to build strong and healthy communities – good places to work, good places to do business and good places to raise families – benefits us all and we are proud to support this and other community initiatives.

A giant flag at Gettysburg Links.

A giant flag greeted Face of America riders at the Gettysburg Links in 2015. World T.E.A.M. Sports photograph.

Triathletes Sought for World T.E.A.M. Sports IRONMAN Maryland Team

By Richard Rhinehart

Cambridge, Maryland, May 4, 2015 – National non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports is seeking five exceptional athletes with and without disabilities to participate in the organization’s first IRONMAN Maryland Triathlete Team, competing this October 3 in the IRONMAN Maryland.

The IRONMAN Maryland, featuring a 2.4-mile swim in the Choptank River, a 112-mile bicycle ride through the scenic Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and a 26.2 mile run to the historic Eastern Shore city of Cambridge, is the first IRONMAN race in the Mid-Atlantic. This year’s triathlon is the second for the site, having debuted in 2014.

World T.E.A.M. Sports IRONMAN Maryland registration site.

Through special arrangements with the Florida-based IRONMAN Foundation, World T.E.A.M. Sports has secured five positions in the sold-out early October triathlon. Like all World T.E.A.M. Sports sporting events, the 2015 IRONMAN team will be inclusive, welcoming both athletes with disabilities, and those who are able-bodied.

Athletes interested in participating as a member of the 2015 World T.E.A.M. Sports team are required to raise $5,000 for the non-profit organization by July 3. To provide assistance in fundraising, World T.E.A.M. Sports has launched an online site that will allow friends, family and colleagues to donate to a qualifying athlete’s fundraising efforts.

To register through the World T.E.A.M. Sports IRONMAN Maryland site, interested athletes are invited to send by email a short letter of interest to the organization’s national events staff for review and approval. This letter should include full contact information, along with a listing of relevant experience and interest in participating with World T.E.A.M. Sports. Once an athlete’s letter of interest is accepted, the athlete will receive an email invitation to register at the World T.E.A.M. Sports event site at no cost and begin fundraising. Availability of positions is limited, so early registration is recommended.

IRONMAN Maryland website.

The $5,000 fundraising minimum will cover the athlete’s entry into the October 3 IRONMAN Maryland event and a World T.E.A.M. Sports branded triathlon shorts and jersey. The athlete is responsible for personal travel to and from the event, lodging, meals and any triathlon licensing fees outside the race entry. No entry may be sold or transferred to another athlete. Funds remaining beyond the costs of the team will be applied to upcoming World T.E.A.M. Sports events, including this September’s Adventure Team Challenge in Colorado.

Visually impaired athletes are permitted bring a guide, they do not have to pay the entry fee. Hand cycles can be used on the bicycling and run segments of the triathlon, though many use a push rim chair during the run.

Like all full distance IRONMAN events, the Maryland race offers qualifying spots to the IRONMAN World Championship in Kona, Hawaii October 10.

Face of America Ride with Injured Veterans Welcomes CA Technologies Support

By Richard Rhinehart

Holbrook, New York, March 16 – National IT management solutions provider CA Technologies is the latest partner for World T.E.A.M. Sports’ April 24-26 Face of America bicycle and hand cycle ride from the Pentagon to the historic battlefields of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

CA Technologies Logo

Joining a growing number of national and regional corporate sponsors for the annual ride honoring injured and disabled military veterans, the New York-based CA Technologies was impressed by the long history of the inclusive ride from non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports. From the first Face of America in June 2000 to last year’s ride with nearly 600 participants, more than 6,500 military veterans, active-duty military and civilians have participated in 12 rides on three routes.

“CA Technologies is proud to support the Face of America ride and the many service men and women who have given so bravely and selflessly of themselves, “ said Erica Christensen, VP, Corporate Social Responsibility, CA Technologies. “We look forward to honoring these courageous veterans by riding side by side with them through this historic landscape.”

A sponsor of one of more than 35 contributing teams in the 110-mile ride, CA Technologies is helping support veterans from Vietnam to Afghanistan and Iraq who have experienced loss of limb, blindness, paralysis, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Post-Traumatic Stress through their service. Each team and rider raises funds to pay for transportation, food and lodging costs for participating athletes with disabilities, as well as cover event costs. Any remaining funds raised through Face of America are applied to upcoming World T.E.A.M. Sports events, such as the annual Adventure Team Challenge in Colorado and the Coastal Team Challenge in Long Island, New York.

2014 Face of America riders north of Frederick.

Participants of the 2014 Face of America ride travel on the country lanes north of Frederick, Maryland. Photography by Richard Rhinehart.

World T.E.A.M. Sports is proud to welcome CA Technologies to our family of sponsors,” said the organization’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Van Brinson. “World T.E.A.M. Sports is working to align ourselves with companies who share our vision. Companies such as CA Technologies are vital in allowing us to continue to pursue our mission of creating challenging inclusive events for our participants.”

Participating veterans in the 2015 Face of America are attending from across the continental United States, Puerto Rico, Canada and Europe. An estimated 150 veterans with disabilities are anticipated.

The 2015 Face of America Ride is supported through sponsorships from Capital One Bank, American Portfolios Financial Services, Booz Allen Hamilton, Benson Botsford LLC, CA Technologies, Deven’s Recycling, DuPont Fabros Technology, Fidelity & Guaranty Life, Freshbikes, General Electric, Lerch, Early & Brewer, Penske Truck Rental, Sila Solutions Group, SUBWAY of the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Three Wire Systems LLC, U.S. Silica, Vedder Price, Veterans Corps of America and Xtiva Financial Systems.

About CA Technologies

CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business—from apparel to energy—is being rewritten by software. From planning to development to management to security, at CA we create software that fuels transformation for companies in the application economy. With CA software at the center of their IT strategy, organizations can leverage the technology that changes the way we live—from the data center to the mobile device. Our software and solutions help our customers thrive in the new application economy by delivering the means to deploy monitor and secure their applications and infrastructure.

Sunny Skies Greet Coastal Team Challenge Athletes

By Richard Rhinehart

August 19, 2014, Smith Point County Park, New York – Athletes from the 2014 Coastal Team Challenge from national non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports are enjoying dinner and camping at Smith Point County Park this evening, following 12 nautical miles of travel by sea kayak along the southern coast of New York’s Long Island.

Under a brilliant blue summer sky with temperatures in the low 70s, the teams of developmentally and physically disabled athletes and able-bodied athletes left Westhampton Beach and paddled along the coast using Hobie two-person Mirage Oasis kayaks. Remaining within sight of the shore, the teams enjoyed calm seas and light winds for their journey.

Following dinner, the teams will camp out under the stars on the beach, before Wednesday’s early start. For the second and final day of the Challenge, teams will have the option of selecting a 14 nautical mile paddle or following a shorter eight nautical mile route to Patchogue. The Challenge will conclude with a late afternoon celebration and dinner at the Dublin Deck with friends, families and followers.

Sponsors and partners for the 2014 Coastal Team Challenge include Independent Group Home Living Program, American Portfolios Financial Services, TimeCapital and Capital One Bank. Each partner provides valued support for the Challenge, from sponsorship funding to logistical support to volunteer assistance.

Get Ready to Paddle

The Coastal Team Challenge from World T.E.A.M. Sports was postponed one week owing to inclement weather on Long Island, New York. Photograph by Alex Rohman.

Staging the sea kayaks.

The sea kayaks are readied for the start of the 2014 Coastal Team Challenge. Photograph by Van Brinson.

2014 Coastal Team Challenge team members.

Team members for the 2014 Coastal Team Challenge pose for a group photograph prior to the start of the event. Photograph by Van Brinson.

On kayaks along the coast.

Coastal Team Challenge teams paddle and pedal the kayaks to Smith Point County Park, along the southern coast of Long Island. Photograph by Van Brinson.

Rest stop along the coast.

First rest stop for the Coastal Team Challenge athletes. Photograph by Van Brinson.

Lunch break on the beach.

Team members stand along the beach at the lunch break. Photograph by Van Brinson.

Along the Long Island coast.

Coastal Team Challenge athletes enjoy their coastal journey. Photograph by Van Brinson.

Teams at the end of the first day.

Teams gather to celebrate the completion of the first day of the Coastal Team Challenge. Photograph courtesy Van Brinson.

World T.E.A.M. Sports’ Adventure Team Challenge Returns to Colorado’s High Country

By Richard Rhinehart

July 30, 2014, Eagle, Colorado – National non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports’ annual Adventure Team Challenge returns to Colorado’s Gore Range September 12-14, following two years in the high Colorado Plateau. The multi-sport, multi-team adventure race features teams of disabled and able-bodied athletes competing together in an inclusive outdoor adventure described as one of America’s most challenging by experienced adventure athletes.

Team work at the 2011 Adventure Team Challenge Colorado.

Working together as a team is critical for success at World T.E.A.M. Sports’ Adventure Team Challenge in Colorado’s high mountains. Photograph by Tom Nardi.

Hosted at the rustic Rancho del Rio fishing resort along the Colorado River in the rugged Gore Mountains northwest of Vail, the Adventure Team Challenge sends teams of five athletes, two of whom are disabled, one being a wheelchair user, through the mountain terrain in the three-stage event. For the athletes with disabilities, and their able-bodied colleagues, the race provides an opportunity to explore the high country wilderness. Participants also learn the exceptional value of cooperation, teamwork and physical fitness.

Rafting on the Colorado River.

Rafting on the Colorado River east of State Bridge, Colorado is a major stage of the Adventure Team Challenge. Photograph by Richard Rhinehart.

This year’s Challenge follows seven previous annual events hosted at Rancho del Rio, along the Arkansas River south of Leadville and in McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area west of Grand Junction. Through the years, nearly 250 athletes have participated in the Challenge, including more than 100 athletes with disabilities ranging from blindness to loss of limb to paralysis to traumatic brain injury. Past athletes have included military veterans and civilians aged from early teens to late 60s, some of whom had not previously ventured off pavement or camped in a tent. Challenge athletes camp in the outdoors, share catered communal meals and strategize for the following day’s stage by lantern and campfire light.

Climbing a granite rock pinnacle.

A team climbs a granite rock outcropping along the Colorado River during the 2011 Adventure Team Challenge. Photograph by Tom Nardi.

Directed since 2009 by knowledgeable adventure race specialists Billy and Helene Mattison of Vail, Colorado, the Challenge includes rafting in Class 3 and Class 4 rapids, off-road mountain bicycling on steep, rocky trails, and technical rope activities, including rappelling and zip lining. Each year, the directors change and adjust the sporting activities so returning teams will not have an advantage over first-time teams. Participating teams from across America include non-profit and club teams competing against corporate and military teams. Despite the difficulties of the stages, all participating men and women have remarkably finished the courses each year.

With a growing interest in the Challenge by persons with disabilities, and a limited number of available opportunities, this year World T.E.A.M. Sports extends an invitation to interested persons with disabilities to complete a short online survey to indicate their interest. The submitted applications will permit the event coordinators to match interested candidates with teams seeking disabled team members. Deadline for submissions is August 11.

The 2014 Adventure Team Challenge Colorado is held under permit from the Bureau of Land Management Kremmling Field Office and is permitted by the US Adventure Racing Association. Sponsors for the 2014 Challenge include Front Street Re, Benson Botsford LLC, and Penske Truck Rental. Event partners include Timberline Tours and Venture Sports.

Learn more about the 2014 Adventure Team Challenge Colorado.

The Rancho del Rio camp at the Adventure Team Challenge Colorado.

The 2014 Adventure Team Challenge returns to Rancho del Rio along the Colorado River north of Eagle for the first time since 2011. Photograph by Richard Rhinehart.

World T.E.A.M. Sports’ CanAm Veterans’ Challenge Concludes July 4

By Richard Rhinehart

July 1, 2014, Washington, DC – Injured veterans from Canada, the United States and Denmark are riding Pennsylvania’s and Maryland’s scenic byways to America’s capital this week as the 766-mile, 16 day inaugural CanAm Veterans’ Challenge from non-profit World T.E.A.M. Sports concludes.

CanAm Team at Parliament.

The inaugural CanAm Veterans’ Challenge team at Parliament in Ottawa, Canada, June 20, 2014. Photograph courtesy Rebecca Brashears.

Riding bicycles, hand cycles and recumbent bikes, the two-week journey from Canada’s Parliament in Ottawa, Ontario comes to an end at the steps of the Capitol in Washington. The group is scheduled to participate in the prestigious National Independence Day Parade on the National Mall, presented by the National Park Service on July 4.

The 16 injured veterans and nine able-bodied colleagues began their ride on June 20 and passed through Ontario, New York and Pennsylvania on their way to the capital. Along the journey, the riders joined together as a team, sharing meals and visits to attractions such as the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York. Many communities, businesses and service organizations welcomed the team members into their town, providing receptions, dinners and special events.

Marina Libro receives an assist on a hill.

Veteran Marina Libro receives a helping hand from three team members in a steep ascent in central Pennsylvania. Photograph by Van Brinson.

Many of the participating veterans saw active service in wars and conflicts from Vietnam and Bosnia to Iraq and Afghanistan. Their service to their country resulted in the loss of limbs, paralysis, blindness, traumatic brain injuries and post-traumatic stress. Riding together helped create a new sense of community for these veterans, as well as demonstrate that individuals with disabilities are capable of exceptional achievements.

Tackling steep ascents in Pennsylvania’s mountains together, the riders found that teamwork helps conquer challenges any one member may face. Riding long miles between rest stops, the riders created strong friendships that will last beyond the conclusion of the Challenge.

Riders depart Binghamton, New York.

Team members depart Binghamton in southern New York June 27, 2014. Photograph by Van Brinson.

“I volunteered to do this ride, because of my love for my country and brothers and sisters in arms,” said Army veteran Steve Baskis of Illinois. “Having lost my vision in Iraq in 2008, I returned back to the United States without the ability to see the beautiful country I grew up in. The CanAm ride provides a blind soldier a unique experience and perspective of North America.”

“I am doing this ride because I want to prove to myself that I can do this and any other challenge that I put my mind to,” said Idaho National Guard veteran Marc Gabiger, who works with the Idaho Steelheads, an ECHL professional hockey team.

Riders gather in Lowville, New York.

A group of CanAm Veterans’ Challenge riders gather in Lowville, New York, on route to Rome. From left, British Columbia veteran Dan Bodden, New Hampshire veteran Harry Carr, Virginia veteran Marina Libro, Virginia, and Colorado veterans Scott Bates and Jose Santiago. Photograph courtesy Steve Virkler, Johnson Newspapers.

Robert Bidder, a member of the Canadian Armed Forces since 1985, looks to the Challenge as an opportunity for “social interaction for those who otherwise might have difficulties due to symptoms related to operational stress injuries. My military career is coming to an end this fall, but I hope to be able to remain in a position where I can assist injured or ill veterans.”

Corporate sponsors for the CanAm Veterans’ Challenge include Realty Capital Securities LLC, American Portfolios Financial Services, Benson Botsford LLC, Exit 10, Gerstein Fisher, Penske Truck Rental, Pershing and Freshbikes. Partners include Wounded Warriors Canada and Soldier On from the Canadian Armed Forces.

Visit the CanAm Veterans’ Challenge web site for detailed ride information.

Inaugural CanAm Veterans’ Challenge Bicycle Ride with Injured Veterans to Inspire

By Richard Rhinehart

Ottawa, Ontario, June 17, 2014 – For 14 days beginning June 20, a team of 16 injured Canadian, American and Danish veterans in World T.E.A.M. Sports’ inaugural CanAm Veterans’ Challenge will ride bicycles, hand cycles and recumbent bicycles nearly 800 miles from the capital of Canada to the capital of the United States.

Steve Baskis climbing.

Army veteran Steve Baskis lost his sight in Iraq. Yet, he is active in outdoor sports, including rock climbing. Photograph courtesy of Steve Baskis.

Departing from the steps of Canada’s Parliament at 9 a.m. June 20, the riders will travel from ten to 90 miles each day as they pass through Ontario, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia on their way to Washington. Arriving in the capital on July 4, the team will participate in the National Independence Day Parade on Constitution Avenue before completing their journey.

Participating riders include war and conflict veterans who served in Vietnam, Bosnia, Afghanistan and Iraq. Joining the veterans will be nine able-bodied riders, two serving as pilots for blind veterans riding tandem bicycles. Other veterans have experienced loss of limb, paralysis, post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries during their national service.

“The CanAm ride will provide a blind soldier a unique experience and perspective of North America,” said Army veteran Steve Baskis, who lost his sight in Iraq. “Along the way between two nations, I hope to motivate and inspire others to dream big and go far.”

“I am doing the ride to connect with other injured soldiers who are trying to overcome their limitations through participation in fitness-related activities,” said Canadian Armed Forces veteran Michael Fuentespina, who completed tours in Bosnia and in Afghanistan. “I hope to learn from their experiences and use this both personally and professionally.”

Michael Fuetespina.

Canadian Armed Forces veteran Michael Fuentespina completed tours in Bosnia and Afghanistan. Photograph courtesy Michael Fuentespina.

U.S. Navy veteran Scott Bates looks at the ride as a way to recover from his service-related injuries. “Cycling itself can even be looked at as a metaphor. While you may not be the fastest or most talented, if you are persistent and do not give up, you will cover vast distances sooner than you realize,” Bates said.

Retired Master Sergeant Marina Libro is the only woman veteran participating in the ride. Libro retired from her Army service in 2011. “This is why I ride,” Libro said. “Cycling keeps me sane. When I can’t ride physically, I am riding mentally. I am beginning to open up more and tell my story more because of cycling. Cycling is my safe place. That is what I hope to get back to on each ride I go on: my safe place, my place to decompress and to physically exert and challenge myself in a safe environment with other people just like me. People say you can’t see your soul – I can: every time I look at my trike.”

Created by World T.E.A.M. Sports, the CanAm Veterans’ Challenge is the latest sporting event by the national non-profit organization. For more than two decades, the New York-based organization has developed and managed inclusive sporting events for persons with disabilities and able-bodied persons. This unique combination illustrates the benefits of teamwork and cooperation – that by working together, great challenges can be overcome. World T.E.A.M. Sports looks to the “coalition of the riding” in the CanAm Veterans’ Challenge to provide inspiration to other persons with disabilities and to the public.

Corporate sponsors for the CanAm Veterans’ Challenge include Realty Capital Securities LLC, American Portfolios Financial Services, Benson Botsford LLC, Exit 10, Gerstein Fisher, Penske Truck Rental, and Pershing. Partners include Wounded Warriors Canada and Soldier On from the Canadian Armed Forces.

Visit the CanAm Veterans’ Challenge website.

Richard Rhinehart serves as Director of Communications for World T.E.A.M. Sports.

Jens Sondergaard

Danish Army veteran Jens Sondergaard on his bike at Danish Army headquarters. The flag on his bike was used by two sled teams in Greenland with the Danish Sirius Patrol. Photograph courtesy Jens Sondergaard.

Site Credits

The World T.E.A.M. Sports website was designed and developed by Exit 10 Advertising.

Content updates by Richard Rhinehart, Director of Communications for World T.E.A.M. Sports.