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  • Thu May 22 2008
  • Posted May 22, 2008
Since the first Wednesday in April the Des Moines based Punk Rock Cycling Women's Team has been hosting a weekly ride from Ritual Cafe in downtown Des Moines. The ride, which covers 22 miles of paved trail and desolate rolling highway, is open to anyone of any ability. Though the ultimate goal for the PRC team is to use this ride as a catalyst for bringing more women into the sport of cycling. Through encouragement and a fun atmosphere the PRC team has seen great success with the Ritual Ride. It is not uncommon to see more than 50 riders attending each week. The ride leaves downtown, travels through Water Works Park, portions of the Great Western Trail, then heads west towards Moffitt Lake before it turns back northwest towards the Des Moines metro. The route is very scenic, very quite, and rarely is a car seen as the riders roll through many of the climbs. The past two weeks the ride has broken 60 people, more than half of which are women. One of those women is Nancy Adams, 51, who has yet to miss a single Ritual Ride, "This ride is a great compliment to my other training," said Adams, "it gives me experience riding in a group, riding on streets instead of trails, and working on hills. They truly mean it when they say all abilities are welcome". Members of the PRC team have "sweep riders" on the Ritual Ride who accompany the slowest rider or group of riders. That way no one gets lost or has to suffer a mechanical problem alone. "I love the fact that they keep riders at the back of the group to make sure everyone returns safely," said Adams, "I have had a few minor mishaps this year, and after every incident I swear one or more of the PRC team has arrived within seconds to help get me going again." Ritual Cafe has even shown their support for the ride extending their evening hours on Wednesdays to close at 8pm. Allowing the returning riders and chance to cool down with smoothies, coffee, and pastries. If you would like to attend the Ritual Ride here is the information: Every Wednesday Ritual Cafe: 13th & Locust in downtown Des Moines Ride starts at 5:30pm 22 miles of paved trail and rolling hills All abilities welcome, road bikes recommended PRC team members include: Jennifer Greenberg, Christina Maravelas, Kelli Mente, Ana Nelson, Jane Riessen, Maria Ruhtenberg, and Emily Schaapveld. The team is sponsored by the Elder Corporation, Visionary Services, Wexford & James, Rasmussen Bike Shop, Specialized, RBS Training Systems, Shimano, and Oakley. For more information about Punk Rock Cycling or the Ritual Ride visit www.punkrockcycling.com

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