Cyclists from Energy Corridor companies will join participants from across the country and around the world to raise millions.
The nation’s largest charity bike ride starts in The Energy Corridor April 20, when the BP MS 150 and some 13,000 cyclists begin a 180-mile journey to raise $18 million in the battle against multiple sclerosis.
Cyclists from Energy Corridor companies, across the nation and around the globe come together with countless volunteers for a heartfelt weekend ride that benefits the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
The Energy Corridor’s Tully Stadium is the BP MS 150’s traditional main starting point, and on the morning of the ride the arena’s parking lot is packed with riders and volunteers. The crowd’s passion and commitment to fight a chronic, crippling disease seems to pour out of the sprawling Tully facility.
“Joining 13,000 riders in a common cause is an amazing experience,” says Clark Martinson, General Manager of The Energy Corridor District, and a frequent rider in the BP MS 150. “It’s quite a thrill to start the ride in The Energy Corridor District, where we champion healthy lifestyles. Promoting bicycle riding is a big part of our mission. It’s even better when you can ride with thousands of like-minded cyclists to battle a debilitating disease.”
Since it began in 1985, the Houston-to-Austin bike ride has raised more than $157 million to support cutting-edge research, programs and services for MS.
Several Energy Corridor companies support entire teams of riders and volunteers, raising thousands and thousands of dollars in the process. For the 13th year, BP is serving as title sponsor, maintaining the largest cycling team with about 750 participants.
Each rider makes a minimum $400 contribution, but many raise far more dollars. The BP MS 150 has long been the top fundraising ride for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Last year, riders and their teams brought in more than $17.5 million to battle MS.
“The enthusiasm and passion people have for the ride and the cause helps to not only recruit new riders, but also makes the ride, as a whole, a one-of-a-kind experience,” said Kelli Dreiling, Vice President of Development in Houston, in a press release from the BP MS 150 organizers. “Everyone has different reasons for riding – to get healthy, to achieve a personal goal, or to ride for a loved one impacted by MS. No matter your reason for getting involved, the BP MS 150 unites us in the mission to help people with MS.
“That unifying force is what makes this ride special each year and will continue to drive us toward a world free of multiple sclerosis.”
Tully Stadium is the beginning of a two-day journey to downtown Austin, ending in front of the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum near the State Capitol on Sunday, April 21. Tully is one of three start options for the BP MS 150, attracting the largest number of riders. They overnight in La Grange, where they celebrate their shared journey and recuperate for a scenic, hilly ride into Austin the next morning.
“I invite all our Energy Corridor neighbors to come out to Tully Stadium Saturday, April 20, and experience the excitement that is the BP MS 150,” says Martinson, who will be trading his sport coat for spandex that weekend.
Registration for the 2013 BP MS 150 is available at bpms150.net. Visit the site to register as a cyclist or volunteer, or to donate online.