Sometimes, Real Winners Come in Last

Tim St Clair carousel Ride2

Do you know many people whose goal is to come in last place? Join the JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes and meet dedicated Ride coaches like Tim St. Clair, who happily travels at the back of the pack to ensure every rider finishes.

Tim, an attorney in Greenville, SC, was a recreational cyclist with no direct connection to T1D. He heard about the JDRF Ride through a neighbor and “just wanted to help.” Since 2003, Tim has been involved with the JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes as a local coach, the head national coach, and currently as a member of the national development committee.

Of his first Ride in Death Valley, CA, Tim says, “It occurred to me quite starkly that I had arrived at something that made my life bigger.” Tim encourages others to experience the “pure emotion” that permeates the celebratory Ride weekend, passing along the popular Ride maxim, “You can’t appreciate what happens under the tent until you’ve been under the tent.”

Tim has participated in 30 JDRF Rides to date, inspiring volunteers, staff, and riders with his encouragement and motivation along the way. In 2012, JDRF recognized Tim’s commitment with the inaugural JDRF “Spirit Award,” an honor that Tim says, “knocked my socks off.”

Like Tim, most of the 1,100 participants in the 2012 JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes will tell you that completing the Ride was a personally rewarding, life-changing accomplishment. Cyclists of all skill levels from around the globe raised $4.3 million for JDRF in 2012 in five gorgeous U.S. locations. The Ride has become such a popular event that JDRF added a sixth location in 2013—Nashville, TN—which has already sold out!

Corporate involvement in the Ride also grew in 2012, as businesses discovered that the Ride is an exciting way to satisfy growing employee interest in volunteer activities that boost camaraderie and morale outside the workplace. Whatever connection to T1D riders have when they sign up, they soon become part of the JDRF community, dedicated to crossing the finish line and changing the landscape for all those affected by T1D.