Any time I spend here on a clever introduction would simply be wasted, because we’re all here for just one (very good) reason: as part of the World Bicycle Relief Grand Slam fundraiser, we are giving away three dream road bikes.
This is not hyperbole. This is three outrageously nice, top-of-the-line road bikes, and we’re giving them all away to people who are lucky enough to be randomly chosen in our contest (read the legalese here).
I’m going to get into the “how you can win” and “why this matters” part a little later in the post, as well as give you a pretty amazing Christmas gift-giving idea that just may wind up getting you one of these bikes.
But right now, let’s get to the actual bikes. (Although if you’re just wanting a link to where you can go donate and thereby get in on this contest, feel free to click here.)
First Dream Bike: Trek Madone Series 9 Frameset + Zipp 454NSW Wheels + eTap Drivetrain
This, all by itself, without being built up, is already worthy of being called a grand prize. But it’s going to be mated with some of the most-sought-after road wheels in the world right now: The Zipp 454 NSW wheelset:
And then we’re going to add a SRAM RED eTap drivetrain, and your choice of SRAM and ZIPP bars, cranks, and brakes.
Honestly, this is just too nice of a bike for normal people. But you might win it, just for making a donation in the WBR Grand Slam.
Dream Bike 2: Specialized S-Works Tarmac
The Tarmac is just a perfect all-rounder. I say this as a person who has ridden my S-Works Tarmac thousands of miles — and plan to ride it thousands more.
And we’re not just giving you the frame, either. We’re giving you the keys to the SRAM / ZIPP candy store . Build this frame up with any drivetrain (including RED eTap, which you would be insane to not get) and any ZIPP wheels (except the 454 NSW wheelset; we have access to only one set of those) you want.
In other words, take this extraordinary frame (or the disc-ready equivalent, if that’s your preference) and build it into your perfect bike. It’s a mind-blowing thought, isn’t it?
Dream Bike 3: Giant TCR Advanced Pro Disc
I swear, I know something about contests where you can win a bike. And this is not an ordinary contest. Not even close. Because this Giant TCR Advanced Pro Disc frameset built up with an eTap drivetrain and whatever combo of SRAM / ZIPP components and wheels you want (excepting the 454 NSW wheels) is just too incredible. flat-mount disc brake integration and 12mm thru-axles front and rear, it’s a versatile race machine for all types of road conditions.
Why All Of This Matters
See what I told you? Three dream bikes, piled on to the other prizes I’ve already mentioned in the WBR Grand Slam. And — this is going to wig you out — I’m not even done announcing prizes. There’s gonna be more. More bikes. And a very amazing cycling trip to a perfect location.
So let’s talk for a moment why several competing bike companies are happy to contribute top-end gear to a single contest. And that’s easy: because World Bicycle Relief is an extraordinary foundation.
Every time it raises $147, a bicycle — as sturdy and bombproof and well-designed as it needs to be for the service these bikes will provide — goes out to a child in an impoverished country.
And that means they can get to school. And get water.
And get better jobs. And in short, have a better life.
You already know how wonderful bikes are. You’ve experienced how they’ve transformed your life. But for these kids, being given a bike is meaningful in a way that most of us simply can’t comprehend. It’s the difference between being able to move forward and being forced to stand still. Figuratively and literally.
So even if you didn’t have a chance at winning one of a slew of amazing bikes, it would still be worth donating, especially since all this month, every donated dollar gets matched by a group of anonymous donors.
Best Christmas Ever
So, one more thought: When you donate this time of year, you’re of course sent a receipt by email. And when you get that receipt, you can actually send an eCard (or if you send at least $147, an actual physical card) to a friend or family member saying you’ve made the donation on their behalf. Which is to say, your gift to them is that you changed an impoverished child’s life in an immediate and drastic way. And that’s a pretty amazing gift.
In other words, if you’re knocking your head against the wall trying to think of something meaningful to give someone, here it is: actually doing something meaningful.
And if you have friends and family asking you what you want for Christmas, how about this: tell them to go to bit.ly/wbr2016 and make a donation on your behalf…and then tell them that if they win one of the drawings, they have to give you the prize.
How The Contest Works
If you haven’t done my contests before, it’s pretty easy. For every multiple of $10 you donate, you automatically get a chance in the prize drawing (I don’t do the drawing, I have a disinterested third-party do that, to avoid conflicts of interest). And for every $147 you donate, you get five bonus chances.
Then, on January 1, the first person is drawn randomly from all the chances (using random.org) and notified, at which point she or he gets to choose from all the prizes. After which the second person gets to choose from the remaining prizes, and so forth. ’til all the prizes are drawn.
Easy. (But here are the official rules, just in case you want to read them.)
So Close to a Million
I’ve been fundraising for World Bicycle Relief for several years, and am incredibly pleased to be able to say that through the generosity of thousands of people, my WBR fundraisers have earned more than
$960,000 $970,000 for World Bicycle Relief.
It’s my hope that this year’s contest will push us over the million-dollar mark. That’s more than 6800 bicycles.
I think we can do it. And when we do, I hope you win.