MIAMI COUNTY — Thousands of miles and donuts were consumed during the 12th annual Tour de Donut bicycle race which started and ended at the city of Troy’s Public Square on Saturday morning.
According to “Head Donut” Roger Bowersock, the event’s move to Troy from Darke County and its new weekend has been well received from cyclists around the country from 28 states, including riders from Canada, West Virginia, California and Texas.
Bowersock said approximately 2,700 riders — 400 more than last year — were registered as of Saturday morning. The event moved from mid-September date and will now keep its fourth Saturday of August for future events. Next year’s event will be the “Baker’s Dozen” for its 13th year.
“We changed weekends and apparently that wasn’t much of a concern. We got lucky on the weather. It’s not too hot and it looked like it was going to rain, but it held off,” Bowersock said. “We had a group of people who helped last night which was great.”
Some riders were caught in a mid-morning shower, which failed to dampen spirits or their love or cycling and sweets.
More than 14,000 donuts were passed out at stops along the courses from Dobo’s Delights in Piqua, Charlie’s Bakery in Celina, and Schuler’s Bakery in Springfield. Riders who consumed donuts knocked off minutes from their ride. The race features riders who eat so many donuts, they end up having “Negative” times when they cross the finish line with full stomachs.
The event included Friday night’s “Donut Jam” with music and activities for families. Bowersock said he was pleased to see the crowds show up for the music, food and fun late Friday evening following Troy High School’s football game.
“There were a lot of people here last night. It was perfect,” Bowersock said.
Community members participated in a donut eating contest. The winner was Troy Police Department’s SRO Tracy Long who devoured five glazed donuts in three minutes, beating Troy Fire Department representatives and other city employees.
The Tour de Donut paired up with Troy’s Be The Match 5K to give another fitness option in downtown Troy Saturday morning. The event is coordinated by council member Tom Kendall and his daughter Lisa Maxson, who is a seven year survivor of leukemia. More than 100 people participated and raised $15,000, including riders who were able to donate to the event during Tour de Donut registration.
“Being involved with Tom and his group and Be the Match themselves motivated everyone. (Tour de Donut) participants were given the options to donate directly and raised $3,000 and we hope a lot of people do the cheek swabs,” he said. “We had some people that came up and registered this morning, their husband was riding and they went ahead to do the walk. It worked well.”
Activities continued in spite of mid-morning rain showers on the Public Square through the early afternoon.
“There’s something for everybody, young and old alike. The Be the Match partnering with the Tour De Donut was a great thing to happen. It’s just anther way to bring the community together,” said Mayor Mike Beamish on Saturday morning.
As of press time, approximately 47 people had submitted cheek swabs to enter into a registry to become a possible bone marrow match to help save lives of those with blood cancers. Kits can be requested and mailed out to those who register online.
During the Be The Match 5K awards, 11 year-old Abriella Ruby urged the crowd to get swabbed to help find a match for Denny Creech, a Milton-Union high school sophomore recently diagnosed with leukemia in May 2018. Ruby and her mother Stephanie attended the 5K. Ruby shared there will be a Be the Match cheek swab booth on Aug. 31 at the Milton-Union versus Oakwood football game in West Milton. Ruby shared how her brother Cody is friends with Creech and is helping spread the message to help him find a bone marrow match.
“I wanted to help Denny out and I wanted to do it for Be the Match,” Abriella shared. Abriella’s message is online at the Troy Daily News’ Facebook page.
For more information about Tour de Donut, visit www.bikesignup.com/Race/OH/TROY/TourDeDonut and Be The Match organization at www.bethematch.org.