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Kelly Brush Century Ride raises $320,000

MIDDLEBURY — The Kelly Brush Century Ride Powered by VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations drew more than 700 riders to its Sept. 6 ride and raised $320,000 for adaptive athletic equipment for individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) and to improve ski racing safety.
 Riding as teams and individuals, 724 cyclists, including 28 handcyclists, rolled out from Middlebury College on Sept. 6 raising a record amount for the Kelly Brush Foundation’s mission to conquer the challenges of paralysis through love of sport and to raise awareness about and raise the bar for ski racing safety. The fundraising ride is Vermont’s largest.
“Gray skies didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of our dedicated volunteers and supporters who turned out for the ninth annual Kelly Brush Century Ride Powered by VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations,” said Zeke Davisson, president of the Kelly Brush Foundation. “The tremendous support has pushed our fundraising total close to $2 million enabling the Kelly Brush Foundation to continue to make a positive difference in the lives of those living with SCI and to shift the paradigm when it comes to ski racing safety.”
In the nine years since the ride’s inception, the Kelly Brush Foundation has donated more than 100 pieces of adaptive athletic gear including handcycles; monoskis; tennis, rugby and soccer chairs; bowling equipment; and even adaptive scuba gear. In addition, more than 400 miles of safety netting has been purchased to line racing and training courses, improving safety and preventing injury. Grants from the foundation have also provided ski and snowboard clubs with safety equipment such as spine protectors and padding for courses and supported the modification of race venues to meet international safety standards.
The ride supports the Kelly Brush Foundation’s three grant programs:
•  Individual Grants for adaptive athletic equipment to individuals paralyzed due to SCI.
•  Ski Racing Safety Grants to ski and snowboard clubs for safety equipment and trail modifications to make race venues safer.
•  Spinal Cord Research Grants to rehabilitation hospitals and organizations working toward a cure for paralysis.
 Grant applications are being accepted for Individual Grants and Ski Racing Safety Grants through Oct. 31. Visit www.kellybrushfoundation.org for information.
The Kelly Brush Century Ride course features rolling terrain and Lake Champlain views over several distances: 25, 50 or 100 miles, with options to ride 65 or 85 miles. Riders and teams of riders compete to raise the most money with prizes for reaching fundraising milestones.

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