Manitoba version of Grand Fondo coming soon?

I recieved this information from Pat Siemens of Body Driven Sports, yup that one, the great little bike/ski shop in Steinbach.

The thought of a Grand Fondo being contemplated for our end of the province provides and opppourtunity for us to ride locally.  But then again we do that already.  What ever here is the info for you to noodle as you pound away on your trainer.

A committee is in the planning stages to have a Gran Fondo for Mental Health Manitoba this area.

The Kelty Patrick Dennehy Foundation, whose mission is ‘Preventing depression
related suicide in young people’ are coordinating the effort in conjunction
with The Manitoba Moods Disorder Association, with all proceeds going to
Manitoba Mental Health.

A Gran Fondo is a big ride in Italian and has started to sweep the country since
the first one was staged in BC, from Vancouver to Whistler last year. In the
first year it was sold out with 3000 riders and this year is sold out again
with 7,000 riders.

Google, Gran Fondo Whistler, to see more detail and info.

In Manitoba, they are hoping to attract in the range of 500-1,500 riders. Although
the Whistler event attracts pro racers from all over, with case prizes and so
on, the goal here is just to get as many riders as possible, that can handle
the approx. 100km ride. In some Gran Fondo’s there is a half race or Medio,
where riders can join in.

The event needs a lot of planning, including permission from all the RM’s. There
will be ‘pit stops’ along the route, providing; porto potties, first aid
stations, tire repair, energy snacks and water stations. The committee is
presently working with the RCMP and MOT to provide road control along the
route, as the ride takes up a whole lane.

Tentatively, the course is set to start at Deacons Corner, through Lorette, Landmark, to
Blumenort, cut over HWY 12 to Giroux, through La Broquerie, through Marchand to

The vision is to have a grand finale in Woodridge, with a stage and speech or two,
overlooking a venue that would include a beer garden, BBQ’d hamburgers and hot
dogs for sale, maybe tee- shirt sales and possibly a band or two. If the Gran
Fondo began at 8:30 AM, riders would be finishing in Woodridge from 11:30am – 4

They are not asking for money, but any help or donation in terms of volunteers to
‘man’ pit stops, amenities, porto potti supply, hydration,and fruit stations.
Also looking for people to get involved by entering the ride, raise money for
the cause through sponsorships or engage the corporate community to come
forward with donations to the cause. All donations would be tax deductable as
both foundations are nonprofit agencies.

 Contact info:
 Kerry Dennehy, Chair, Gran Fondo for Mental Health


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About bigjac

Just a middle-aged man whose blood pressure and cholesterol were out of wack and needed a tuneup, bad. Then I rekindled my love for riding a bike -- just the simple act of turning the cranks. What happened next is I met a lot of neat people who are as nuts as I am. Ride on.

5 thoughts on “Manitoba version of Grand Fondo coming soon?

  1. This would be great, I hope it happens and I’m certainly interested in helping out. I am surprised that I haven’t heard about this though. It seems that this group may not have made any contact with the South Eastman Mental Health program. I will look into that. I’m sure we’d also be prepared to be involved as an organization.

  2. Sounds awesome! The MCA is meeting about the 2012 race season in early January. I hope the committee will commiserate with the MCA so there are no conflicts. Muddy Waters should also be considered of course. And perhaps the Randonneur schedule. Very exciting!!

  3. Wow, I just watched the video on the Whistler Gran Fondo website. This is very cool. I mean, Blue Rodeo in full kit playing to 3,000 cyclists? Come on, if that’s not one of the most awesome events your roadie brain can conjure up, you’ve dumped your ride one too many times.

  4. Best wishes from GranFondo Canada as you embark on this project. It took us a long time and lots of commitment to create the RBC GranFondo Whistler, but events like these provide fantastic inspiration for riders. Over 30% of riders in our 2011 event took up cycling as a sport just because they wanted to do this ride. The GranFondo experience is a powerful one, we want to encourage you to make magic happen in Manitoba! – Kevin Thomson, President of GranFondo Canada

  5. Yes, it’s me ,hopeful Chair of The Gran Fondo for Mental Health,set for June 22,2013.We were planning for June 2012,but ran out of runway folks.There have been some changes ie. we are no longer partnering with Moods Disorders of Manitoba,but are starting with a new committee,which I invite you to volunteer to be on.We now have plenty of time to get organized and I promise it will be a great adventure for a great cause.A lot of work has been done but yes,we need a grass roots committee,to organize the rest of the Gran Fondo,including volunteers,sponsors riders and supporters.[This includes a major ‘naming sponsor’,for a donation of 50K.My wife and I are road bikers and are registered for the 3rd Gran Fondo Vancouver-Whistler in Sept.2012,and it is the most exciting sporting event I have ever been in.Lets get this show on the road,so call me with your support at 1-778-886-0298 or e- mail
    I really believe in a few short years this event can stand as a legacy beside events like The Manitoba Marathon,forever.

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