We all ride for different reasons: pleasure, fitness, camaraderie, stress relief… the list is seemingly endless.
Steve Joyce, a rider who had previously ridden for many of the reasons described above, even finishing the Trans Rockies, now has a different motivation.
Steve recently lost his baby boy, Bo, to an infection contracted during a break in dialysis treatment for a serious condition that had developed in the womb. He is survived by his twin brother, Baxter, and older siblings, Kobi, Ryder, Carter, and Kellon.
Steve, his wife, Tracy, and Bo’s brothers have naturally been left heartbroken by their loss, but, almost as if to prove the adage that hope is stronger than tragedy, Steve is getting on his bike to raise funds for the medical unit in which Bo spent the last 11 days of his life.
Steve will tackle the Bontrager 24-12 endurance mountain bike race, which starts on Saturday July 7 2013, to raise funds for the children’s intensive care unit of Southampton Hospital.
“While we were at the unit, I learned just how dependent on charity funding the ward was for buying equipment and other expenses. I jokingly commented that I would help with fund raising and pick an event to support the unit’s own charity, Friends of PICU,” Steve said.
People who know him will understand that Steve is serious about the challenge and about raising the vital funds; those who don’t can draw their own conclusions from his decision to enter the 24-hour race as a solo competitor.
It will not be the first major cycling challenge Steve has taken on. In 2008, he completed the Trans Rockies mountain bike stage race, widely considered one of the toughest events in competitive mountain biking.
He’s taken time off the bike in recent years to support the BMX racing careers of Kobi and Ryder, and is not underestimating the scale of the challenge in preparing for the Bontrager 24-12, a race he says he will ride in his Bo’s memory.
“The race is in July 2013, so thankfully I have a few months to train and prepare,” he said. “I’ve always been a keen cyclist, but in the last few years my older sons’ cycling careers have taken off, and I have taken a back seat and put on a few pounds, so the challenge is really on as I am fighting weight and fitness,” he said.
To support Steve in his bid to raise funds for the children’s intensive care unit of Southampton Hospital, click here to visit his JustGiving page.