Hincapie To Breakaway From Cancer
As the Tour of California fast approaches, cycling attention at home turns to the cream of American riders who’ll be the obvious fan favorites. Atop that list is George Hincapie, who’ll be joining the Breakaway From Cancer charity ride in Palo Alto CA on Feb10th, and who recently talked about life on a new team, and his involvement with this good cause…
PEZ Thanks BreakAway From Cancer for allowing us to be the first to publish this transcript. It’s also available as a podcast at breakawayfromcancer.com
Interviewer: We’re here today with George Hincapie, professional cyclist and 12-time Tour de France veteran. George has participated in the Breakaway from Cancer™ initiative since it began in 2005. This year, he’s going to ride in the Breakaway from Cancer™ charity ride in Palo Alto, California. It’s taking place on February 10, 2008. All proceeds from the charity ride will support the services and programs offered by The Wellness Community and the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship. I’m here today to talk with George about the upcoming season and his decision to get involved with Breakaway from Cancer.
George at last year’s Breakaway From Cancer ride.
Interviewer: George, you spent the last 11 years of your career with both Discovery and US Postal. Tell us some of your favorite memories of the last 11 years with them.
George: My favorite memories would have to be being part of eight Tour De France winning teams and also winning my own stage in the Pyrenees in stage 15 in 2005.
Interviewer: And right now we’re in the midst of the off season. Were you able to take any time off this year?
George: Yes, I took the whole month of October off my bike. Spent as much time as I could with my family. We went on a little vacation. Played some tennis with my friends, which I love playing tennis. And basically just relaxed as much as I could.
Interviewer: And now your back in high swing?
George: Yes, I started again in November. I’ve been ramping up the miles every month, and now I’m doing tons of miles [both laugh].
Interviewer: And as you are now preparing for your first season with Team High Road, can you tell us about your training camps and perhaps some initial thoughts about riding with this new team.
George: Yes, well initially I was definitely little bit nervous going into the training camp as I’ve been part of the same team basically my whole career. So going into the first Team High Road camp, I didn’t know what to expect, but as is turns out, the riders on the team were super friendly and very fun to hang out with. The staff was very supportive and very enthusiastic so I’m very excited for the years to come with High Road
Interviewer: And what about your goals for this season? Do you have high hopes for the Classics?
George: My big goals are Paris-Roubaix, the Tour de Flanders, and I’d like to start off and hopefully win some stages of the Amgen Tour of California.
Interviewer: Now for those of us who are summer recreational riders, do you have any tips for what we should when he get back on our bikes when Spring hits?
George: Well, I would start off slowly and try to follow a good training program and obviously try to have a great nutrition program. Following good nutrition and training programs will help you enjoy bike riding a lot more.
Interviewer: We see that you’re involved in a very important charity event called Breakaway from Cancer. What inspired you to get involved with this group?
George: Well – like nearly every family is touched by cancer – my family was touched by it, and I know how important it is to have an initiative like Breakaway from Cancer and be part of that.
Interviewer: Can you tell our listeners more about Breakaway from Cancer?
George: Yes, Breakaway from Cancer is a national initiative created by Amgen to raise awareness of free services and programs for people affected by cancer.
Interviewer: Now there are two charities involved in Breakaway from Cancer. Can you tell us what they are and perhaps give us some contact information so folks can learn?
George: Yeah, the first one is The Wellness Community which is an international non-profit organization dedicated to providing free support and services and education and hope to people affected by cancer.
The second one is the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship and that advocates for quality cancer care for all Americans and empowers cancer survivors.
You can get more information by going to the Web site which is breakawayfromcancer.com
Interviewer: George, I understand that the Breakaway from Cancer charity ride raises funds for two non-profit organizations and that if anyone who is listening raises $750 dollars they get the opportunity to ride with you on the event. Is that correct?
George: Yes, actually we’re going to have a meet and greet before the ride and we’re going to start off together, and we’ll do whatever pace those riders would like to do.
Interviewer: And we heard that Robin Williams came out to ride with you at last year’s San Francisco Breakaway from Cancer charity ride. How was that?
George: Yeah, that was great. Robin is a really great person. He loves cycling. He was so funny when he came out. It was great that the people were so excited that he was there and I was surprised. He didn’t even tell me he was coming so it was actually great for me as well.
Interviewer: Well, thank you, George.. Clearly, many of us have been touched by cancer in our families and with our friends. Can you tell what you think the future of Breakaway from Cancer is and perhaps can you give some advice or some thoughts to many of our friends and our colleagues and family who are suffering from cancer?
George: Well, like I said earlier, I’m just really honored to be part of the Breakaway from Cancer Initiative. Just being able to be part of something that can help empower patients and just make their time with cancer a bit easier is I think super important. So I think the more people affected by cancer that can go to breakawayfromcancer.com and get more information and try to join the local Wellness Centers and find out more information about the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship all these little things will help them deal with the pain of cancer.
Interviewer: And one last time if you would, the Web site address for our listeners.
Interviewer: Thanks for spending time with us again today, George. We wish you the best with the Amgen Tour of California and throughout the cycling season. We appreciate your sincerity and we appreciate your ongoing dedication to helping people with cancer find the resources they need.
For more information about the Amgen Tour of California, visit www.amgentourofcalifornia.com or for tips on how to cope with cancer or caring for a loved one with cancer, please visit www.breakwayfromcancer.com.
Breakaway Ride/Race Info
The ride will feature a 25-mile course and finish line festivities and take place in Palo Alto, CA on Sunday, February 10, 2008. It is a charity ride to help benefit The Wellness Community and the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship. The race will start at the Stanford Blood Center in Palo Alto, follow cycling friendly roads and bike lanes around the “Portola Loop.” There are rolling hills throughout the course, and the ride will start out heading west on Juniperro Serra Blvd and Alameda de Las Pulgas going through Stanford and Menlo Park before turning south into the heavily forested Town Woodside. After a brief stop at the mid-way aid station, the course will continue around the loop passing through the Portola Valley and past the open land near the Arastradero Preserve before finishing back at the Stanford Blood Center. The race is in the most scenic areas of Palo Alto Area. So it’s a nice ride.