Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Georgia's Cyclists are Pedaling Hard to Stop Diabetes at Local Tour de Cure Event

/PRNewswire/ -- In an effort to reduce the growing prevalence of diabetes, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia (BCBSGa), is the premiere sponsor of the Atlanta Tour de Cure® (TDC) on Sunday, May 15, 2011 at Bouckaert Farm in Fairburn, Georgia. This multi-faceted ride is the American Diabetes Association's (ADA) annual national cycling event benefitting diabetes research and advocacy to help change the future of diabetes and help stop its devastating complications.

The American Diabetes Association's Tour de Cure event is more than just a fun day outdoors. Participating in the Tour is about giving hope to the 26 million people currently living with diabetes, as well as to their families and their friends – ultimately finding a cure and preventing the threat faced by the 57 million Americans currently at risk.

To further enhance this commitment, Morgan Kendrick, BCBSGa president has been appointed as the Tour's Executive Sponsor, where he will be responsible for communicating the importance of BCBSGa's partnership with the ADA to both internal and external audiences throughout the state, in addition to serving as a corporate contact for other companies interested in joining the event.

"I am honored to serve as the Executive Sponsor and have already joined our BCBSGa Blue Blazers team," said Morgan Kendrick, president, BCBSGa. "In fact, we are encouraging our employees to support this cause by joining our cycling team or to volunteer their time at the event. The Tour provides a great opportunity for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia's employees to join together for a day of fun, fitness and entertainment."

"More than likely we all know someone impacted by diabetes," continued Kendrick. "I know that's true for me and true for a majority of our 3,200 employees across the state. We really want Georgians to know that we've joined the movement to stop diabetes."

Individuals and teams composed of co-workers, family and friends will be taking the ride of their life and will join the groundswell of a combined 40,000-plus cyclists and volunteers who will be participating in events across the country. Tour de Cure is designed for all skill levels from the occasional rider to the experienced cyclist and offers five routes, including:

* 10-Mile Fun Ride: This Family-Friendly Fun Ride is accessible to all ages and fitness levels, featuring a flat, enjoyable road that stretches along a serene area of the Silk Sheets trail.
* 14-Mile Ride: The 14-mile ride offers a moderate challenge while being safe and scenic. Frequent rest stops and plenty of SAG patrols make this ride a great choice for everyone, from the beginner to intermediate cyclist.
* 34-Mile Ride: The 34-mile ride is the perfect choice for an intermediate cyclist. This scenic route offers a greater challenge and yet is fully supported by our SAG vehicles and full rest stops.
* 62-Mile Metric Century: This 62-mile metric century features a fun yet challenging ride through the Silk Sheets - a perfect choice for the advanced cyclist or a rider who wants an even greater challenge. Full route support ensures a safe ride from start to finish.
* 100-Mile Century: This 100-mile century is a true test of endurance – best suited for the experienced cyclist. Traversing 100 miles on Fairburn's (Silk Sheets) best roads guarantee an unforgettable experience.

"We are truly excited to have Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia as a sponsor of this momentous national event here in Georgia," said Michael Gault, Senior Executive Director, Atlanta/North Georgia Region American Diabetes Association. "Their contributions will help provide needed funds to help the nearly 26 million Americans living with diabetes – including more than 1 million Georgians."

"I encourage other Georgia companies and individuals to start their own team because every dollar raised benefits diabetes research," said Kendrick.

The Tour de Cure raises funds through registration fees and pledges collected by the individual cyclists. To register visit: or call Aimee Simpson at 404-320-7100 x3034.

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