Over in Taiwan for a preview of the Taipei Cycle Show as well as to visit a handful of factories in Taichung.

Thanks for all the great stocking stuffers we received from everyone.

Thanks for all the great stocking stuffers we received from everyone.

Thanks for all the great stocking stuffers we received from everyone.

For Dave Neiswander, director of World Bicycle Relief's Africa operations, WBR's microfinance program speaks to his financial background. A former investment banker in Washington, D.C., who moved to Zambia three years ago, Neiswander said combining the best practices of microfinance with quality bicycles is a way to spread millions of bicycles across Africa.

I was buzzing around Twitter this morning and saw Gary Newkirk's post about being featured in the OC Register.

Just wrapped up a whirlwind tour of Bay Area bike companies with BRAIN sales guy Peter Kirkpatrick. We made good use of our two days—started in Marin County, cruised over to the East Bay before heading south to Santa Cruz and Scotts Valley, then made our way back up through San Jose and San Carlos. Along the way, we saw folks from Swobo, Marin Mountain Bikes, WTB, Panaracer, Bianchi, Ibis, Blackburn, Giro, Wordlock, Look and Ritchey.

There are a lot of reasons why a child wouldn't go to school—no books, bad teachers, sick parents or guardians or the need to work to support their families—but F.K. Day says the one we can affect is transportation.

Today we traveled by bus to Keembe, a rural community about an hour and 15 minutes away from Lusaka. The area has special meaning for WBR because it's where they tested bikes sold in Zambia before designing their own. F.K. Day said they saw a lot of bike failures there. It's also one of the areas WBR has been in the longest. They've been on the ground there for over two years as part of the RAPIDS program to provide World Vision caregivers with a bicycle.

World Bicycle Relief president F.K. Day says all answers reside in the field. So I am going into the field to understand the impact of bicycles in rural communities in Africa. I'm in Zambia as part of the World Bicycle Relief Million Dollar Ride, a fundraising trip to raise money for the non-profit group Day started almost five years ago to bring bicycles to impoverished areas to increase mobility and productivity.

I started out writing about the actual Ride for the Roses—which has now evolved into the Livestrong Challenge. After observing the events of last weekend, I realized that “it’s not about the Ride.” The weekend is a “gathering of the tribe,” or in Lance’s words, “the army.” This is Lance’s “Obligation of the Cure.”

It just so happened that the day BRAIN's West Coast sales rep Peter Kirkpatrick and I chose to visit a list of companies in the Boulder/Denver area was the same day the biggest early season storm in more than a decade blew in.

Ray Keener passed along a (in progress) QBP survey to me a few days back, and the numbers clearly illustrate that the IBD majority still hasn't bought into carrying electric bikes.

Giant Bicycles hosted a two-day fundraiser to benefit Tara Llanes Road to Recovery and the Reeve-Irvine Spinal Research Center last week at Northstar in Lake Tahoe. The event, which raised $15,000, included a Jump Jam, a DH clinic with Giant pro Jared Rando, a DH set up and maintenance clinic with Frank Trotter and the premier of "New World Disorder 10," followed by a raffle and a beer garden.

I don't think I've ever seen so many female riders in the same place at the same time as I did last night at Rock N Road in Mission Viejo.

BRAIN wrapped up the Boston Dealer Tour on Wednesday with a 30-plus mile ride that wound us through the city on a beautiful, crisp Autumn day (no rain—yes!).

Thanks to Triathlete Magazine and all their hard work for compiling these numbers.

The Dealer Tour crew slogged through a steady New England rain on Tuesday morning during our 12-mile trek into Cambridge.

The BRAIN Boston Dealer Tour rolled out of Waltham, Massachusetts, Monday morning with a team of 15 riders from sponsors Giant, Pedro's, Speedplay, Panaracer, Craft and Lazer. The weather was a bit brisk, especially for us SoCal weather wimps, but we managed to stay dry, warm and caffeine infused (thanks Cycle Loft!) for much of the day.

A lot can change in 10 years. On Friday I was able to witness some major changes taking place at my alma mater, the University of California Irvine, which I hadn’t returned to since graduating nearly a decade ago.


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