By Richard Rhinehart
Amarillo, Texas, April 9, 2012: In the rugged hoodoo-filled canyons of Palo Duro Canyon near Amarillo, Texas, 20 wounded warriors will gather this April 26-28 for a weekend of intensive mountain bike rides with President George W. Bush.
Six wounded warriors are representing World T.E.A.M. Sports in the second annual Warrior 100K ride, covering 100 kilometers of singletrack and doubletrack trails in a desert landscape dominated by the canyon, which is 120 miles long, up to 20 miles wide and more than 800 feet deep. A program of the George W. Bush Institute’s Military Service Initiative, the Warrior 100K includes athletes from the Wounded Warrior Project, Ride 2 Recovery, and the Challenged Athletes Foundation, in addition to World T.E.A.M. Sports.
“I am honored to host 20 of our nation’s bravest souls for the second annual W100 in the Palo Duro Canyon,” said President Bush in announcing the 2012 Challenge. “I look forward to spending time with these wounded warriors in a beautiful part of Texas.”
Honoring and recognizing the exceptional dedication of our nation’s military who were injured in Iraq or Afghanistan, the Warrior 100K ride is an invitational event that brings together wounded warriors to ride 100 kilometers in the dry desert heat of west Texas.
Led by World T.E.A.M. Sports team leader GySgt John Szczepanowski, USMC, from Santee, California, the non-profit’s athletes include PO3 Chris Goehner, USN, Ret., from Ellensburg, Washington; Cpl Daniel Carter, USMC, Ret., from Winchester, California; LCpl Adam Jahnke, USMC, Ret., from Charlotte, North Carolina; Sgt David Wright, USMC, from Omaha, Nebraska; and Sgt Matthew Zbiec, USMC, Ret., from La Mesa, California.
In April 2011, two wounded warriors from World T.E.A.M. Sports participated in the inaugural Warrior 100K, held near Big Bend National Park. Staff Sgt Scott Bilyeu, USAF (ret), and Cpl Joshua Davis, USMC (ret), both participants of the organization’s 2010 Sea to Shining Sea cross-country ride, joined now retired CEO and President Paul Bremer at the ride.
“It was a fine tribute to the men and women in the armed services who have given so much to keep America safe,” Bremer reported following the event, “and an indication that World T.E.A.M. Sports is recognized as a leader in providing sporting events that change peoples’ lives.”