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Somewhere between Greenville and Saluda

2016 Ride For Mike Route – Countdown Day 2

Now that I’ve talked all about “why” I am doing the 2016 Ride For Mike, let’s take a moment to look at “what” the ride will entail. When the rubber hits the road Friday morning, where will I be going and how will I get there? Here’s the low cadence low down.

2016 Ride For Mike Route

2016 Ride For Mike Route

The plan is to have everything packed and ready to roll by Thursday evening. I’ll have the car pointed out the driveway and the bicycle tuned and prepped. Once it is all in place, I’ll try to get to bed a little earlier than usual.

I’ll awake Friday morning with enough time to eat a nice bagel and egg breakfast sandwich, take a wake-me-up shower, and get dressed for the ride. The weather is supposed to be awesome that day, so what I wear shouldn’t be complicated. There really won’t be much more to do at that point than to start the ride.

That will be simple as well. The ride starts at my driveway. I’ll head down my street with the Beautiful Redhead following me in the Honda FIT. Then we’ll make a right turn onto Highway 29 for the first long leg of the journey.

This stretch will take me from Greenville to the outskirts of Spartanburg. I’m hoping that by starting on the road at 6AM, I will be able to avoid most of the traffic and more importantly catch as many green lights as possible on this traffic light infested ribbon of asphalt. Even so, it will be tough because of the undulating terrain.

If I get the lights right, I might be able to average 18 mph through this section. An hour and a half into the ride I will make my next turn to by-pass Spartanburg. The road I’m aiming for is Highway 9 on the eastern side of Highway 29. At that point, I’ll be heading due east with a little southern bent.

I’ll pick up Hwy 9 in Pacolet, SC. There will be a couple of turns along the way as I move through some towns, but it is a pretty straight shot until I reach Cheraw, SC. Then I’ll move off of Highway 9 as I make my way over the North Carolina border. I’ll be heading through towns familiar to me from my childhood as I loosely follow Highway 74 into southeastern NC.

Laurinburg, Maxton, Red Banks, Pembroke, Lumberton, and finally Bladenboro. I won’t actually enter the Bladenboro city limits, but will turn into some rural farming roads that will wind away from traffic and bring me to my parents’ house. I’ll finish the ride as I pull into the drive on JA Carroll Road on the edge of Crawley Swamp.

Elevation profile for the 2016 Ride For Mike

Elevation profile for the 2016 Ride For Mike

I’ve broken the ride into two sections. The first is 125-mile section to Pageland, SC. This is going to be the toughest part of the ride. While the overall topography flows down toward the coast, the elevation graph looks like a saw blade. It is my intention to reach this waypoint on Friday.

Then I’ll decide what to do…

screen-shot-2016-09-28-at-7-12-20-amThe second section is really the “horse smelling the barn” section. At this stage, there is an actual  negative grade toward sea level. The jagged rhythm-breakers of the first 125 miles gives way to more gently rolling to flat roads. Depending on detours or wrong turns I should have 115 miles to go.

So, depending on how I feel when I reach Pageland, I’ll decide if I keep going. In the back of my mind, there is a little voice calling me to make a day of it. Of course, that would mean a 14 hour day in the saddle. That is why the other little voice in my head is telling me to go into this with a two-day plan.

Stay tuned…

There is one more hurdle I have to get over. It is my fundraising goal of $20,000. Right now things stand at $1825. Can you help me with that? Learn more about the project and give at


I Ride For Windell Countdown Day 3

I don’t know if it has yet hit me that I am rolling out in three days on the 2016 Ride For Mike. I know I’ve caused some confusion… So, is this Ride For Mike or is it Ride For Windell? The answer is “Yes.”

Michael T. McCaskill with baby Grace

Michael T. McCaskill with baby Grace

It is the Ride For Mike because the I Do It For Foundation was started and continues to operate in his memory. I set a goal back in 2007 to ride in a charity ride each year in his memory. It is something I’ve managed and some of them have been pretty epic!

So, every ride I do for the I Do It For Foundation is a “Ride For Mike.” The person I am honoring or the cause for which I am riding can change. That is why this year’s edition of the Ride For Mike is “I Ride For Windell.” As I am riding to honor my father who is recovering from a stroke he had in June.

Greenville to Charleston

2011 Ride For Mike Route

In some ways, this is a return to the old days. After doing several organized rides, I began to branch out to organize my own events. The first of these was the 2010 Ride For Mike from Memphis, TN to Apex, NC — a 730-mile solo ride over 7 days. Then in 2011 I followed up with a Greenville, SC to Charleston, SC ride — a 220-mile solo ride in one day.

Then I think I just got tired! In 2012 – 2015 I participated in already established rides for my Rides For Mike. The only break in that was 2013 when I helped Michael T’s dad, Mike, finish his first century ride. However, it wasn’t as challenging as those first solo rides.

This two-day (maybe one-day?) 240 miles ride is going to be a challenge. I trained hard for the Greenville to Charlotte ride. I have rarely averaged over two hours on any ride in 2016. I wouldn’t say that I fear I can’t do it. I would say that I dread how I know it is going feel. So, at this point, I put this attempt right up there with the 2010 and 2011 rides.

Greenville, SC to Bladenboro, NC

2016 Ride For Mike

Follow along with me as I prep to leave Friday morning. I’ll be keeping everyone up-to-date via social media as the ride progresses. It will be interesting to see how far I can get on day one. Find out by following on Instagram.


No hidden fees

You may have noticed that the funds raised during the I Ride For Windell project are not going to Windell. They are going into the I Do It For Foundation. Let me explain why.

Simply put, it costs money to raise money. The I Do It For Foundation is committed to providing this platform free of charge to our Doers and making sure that 100% of the money raised goes to the Inspiration. This is important to us.

Consider, the popular fund raising site. They do a great job! They also are upfront with you that when money is processed through their site that up to 8% will be taken from the money you gave. So, let’s say you gave $1000 through the system.

($1000 x 5%) + ($1000 x 2.9%) + $.30 = $79.30
Total given to need: $920.70

$29.30 goes directly to process the transaction. Then $50 goes to to help improve their tools, pay their employees, and maintain their infrastructure. From my point of view, they do a good job.

However, there is one thing with which I take exception qui vend du cialis. The following image is a screen capture from their site. Screen Shot 2016-09-02 at 8.43.02 AM

There are no hidden fees at I Do It For. It is 100% free for our Doers and no transaction fees are charged to the donors when they give. 100% of the donations go to the Inspiration. So, let’s say you give $1000 through I Do It For

$1000 = $1000
Total given to need: $1000

While there are no hidden fees, there are real costs associated with processing the money. I Do It For Foundation covers the processing fees for every transaction. That $29.30 has to come from somewhere so the bank can be paid! We also want to continue to improve our online and promotion tools, but we don’t get that $50 from the donation coming in. By the way, there are no employees to pay as all involved in day-to-day operations are volunteers.

So, each year I find myself begging for funding to help get us through another year. To be honest, too much success could kill us. If we started having hundreds of projects running, we would struggle to cover expenses. That is why we have hesitated to promote the foundation. We need to get an “endowment” started that will allow us to move forward with confidence that we can maintain our objective of providing 100% of the donations to our Inspirations at no cost (in money at least) to our Doers.

Funny that I ended up doing this because I HATE asking for money. However, I am asking now. Please support the I Do It For Foundation. Help us move forward with confidence providing a better platform for more and more Doers to show their support for someone they love.


Thank you!

2016 Ride for Mike is for the future

Since 2007 I have ridden an organized event in memory of my friend Mike McCaskill. Mike finished his battle with cancer that year. He died shortly before I rode my first-ever metric century ride in his honor. It was the beginning of something much larger.

For several years, I continued to participate in organized rides with Mike as my inspiration. My focus turned from taking part in charity rides for non-profits to trying to help individuals with needs. This allowed me to see directly how the money I was raising was being used.

The next evolution was the creation of the I Do It For Foundation. What if there were thousands of people around the country completing their own “Rides For ____”? With the foundation, my pledge to remember Mike could continue beyond my ability to ride. So began

Riding a bicycle is one thing, but starting and building a foundation is another! With the help of friends and the team at Worthwhile, I was able to get things rolling.  Tens of thousands of dollars have gone to help individuals in need.

That brings us to 2016. This is the first year that the foundation has the full recognition as a non-profit with 501(c)(3) status. Now that the status has been achieved, it is as though we are beginning again! We’re looking to 2017 with a new level of confidence.


Our goal for this year is $20,000. The funds will be going to kickstart the foundation incorporating some of the lessons we have learned. It will also help cover expenses related to new I Do It For programs.

  • updates to better present the projects and make starting a project simpler
  • Production of I Do It For items to help promote awareness of the foundation
  • Administrative expenses – bank charges, software licenses, processing fees, etc.
  • Online promotion — Google Adwords, Facebook boosts, Twitter sponsor links, etc.

So, on September 30 I will leave Greenville, SC to ride to my boyhood home of Bladenboro, NC. I’ll be covering the 240 miles in honor of my dad who suffered a massive stroke this year. I want this to be an encouragement to him while at the same time allowing him to have a part in helping to support the foundation.

Windell Pait is a man of character and humility whose reputation in his community is one of honesty and charity. He is the man I want to be. He represents the values underlying this foundation. I cannot think of a better person for my Inspiration during this year’s ride.

My original intent was to cover the distance in one day. However, friends have come along side who want to be a part of the adventure. In order to make this possible, I am dividing the ride into two days. We will leave Greenville the morning of September 30 and arrive in Bladenboro the evening of October 1.

If you would like to ride with us, contact me at If you can’t join me, please consider giving to this year’s campaign. $20,000 is a very ambitious goal! However, it is a necessary target to move the foundation to the next level. Give today at

I Do It For Facebook Cover

Finally. I Do It For Foundation officially a Public Charity

Since our founding in 2013, we have attempted to finalize our charitable status with the IRS. It has not stopped us from attempting to help our Doers serve their Inspirations, but it has held us back in raising the needed funds for us to operate. This has forced us to hold back going all out building the foundation.

I Do It For FoundationWe are pleased today to announce that we are officially recognized as a 501(c)(3) organization. This allows us to take tax deductible donations as well as gives us the official legitimacy from the government. It doesn’t change our mission, but it does improve our ability to fulfill it.

Why did you not receive your status in the past?

I Do It For Foundation is unique in that our focus is on helping individuals rather than primarily raising funds for organizations or causes. The best we can tell is that the IRS agent receiving our original filing set it aside because this person thought we were seeking to make those gifts for individuals tax deductible. It got shuffled into a file and stagnated.

However, our filing was to make donations to the Foundation’s operating expenses tax deductible. We never intended to seek that status for gifts to the individuals we serve. We thought we had clearly expressed that in the documents and put that wording in our publicly viewable documentation.

We waited nearly 12 months before we started asking questions. We figured that the wheels of government were just turning slowly. Our attorney began to ask questions and later learned that the filing had been put on hold — but without the IRS informing us.

He filed a complaint and clarified our intentions. Finally, we started to see movement and the deed is done!

What does this mean for how we handle funds?

1. One thing that does not change is that money donated to our projects for our Inspirations IS NOT tax deductible. We cannot legally provide tax deductible receipts for money that will be given to individuals.

2. What changes is that now money donated to the I Do It For Foundation to cover operational expenses (web site development, financial charges, Doer support items, and other administrative expenses) will be tax deductible.

It is our desire with this update in our status we can begin to pick up momentum as we support inspiring individuals who are facing a disease or need by raising money and rallying a network of support around them.

I Do It For Foundation
A 501(c)(3) under federal tax guidelines
EIN: 46-1813494

No limits

After much discussion and looking at how things are playing out practically, I’ve reached the conclusion to remove the limits on the number of people who can be members of a team on the Unofficial Zwift Team and Club Listing. A number of teams have reached the limit. You will now see those teams listing more that 15 riders.

Why the change?

  1. The problem we were trying to avoid has not happened.

A concern with larger teams is that they could take over a race with sheer numbers. However, there are a couple of reasons why that has not been an issue. 1) Numbers are not necessarily a help on Zwift. It is harder to control a race in this virtual world, and the draft created by a large group is easily taken advantage of by all riders. 2) The international flavor of teams on Zwift mean not all team members can easily participate in races. You will find out of 15 teammates, 10 might gravitate to one particular timezone and 5 to another.

2.  “The List” is not the place to manage team size.

Primarily based on the second reason above, I don’t think that “The List” is the best place to manage participants in a race. I think that is best handled by the organizers of the race. IF there are going to be limits, the organizers can communicate that to the teams. The team managers could then draw from their rosters to formulate the representative team for that event. This takes us back to the second point above, too limited of a roster and it would be hard for a manager to get riders in the ever growing number of races in multiple time zones.

3. “The List” is just that… a list.

Tam Burns has a pretty cool set up for controlling the World Championships. The teams created in his system are limited for that particular race. He is able to enforce that because he controls it. With this list, there is no way to control who shows up and races. There are not ramifications for any team that shows up with riders who are not on the official unofficial roster! If there is one thing people can’t stand, it is setting up rules that you can’t or don’t plan to enforce.

So, there you have it. The teams will continue to grow. Should a problem arise we’ll all deal with it then. Until then… Ride On! and Race On!

Enjoy the Halloween weight loss!

Enjoy the Halloween weight loss!

Clubbing on the Island

It has been a busy weekend and an even busier start of probably my busiest week of the year. However, I just have to stop and say thank you to those folks who have joined me in forming the I Do It For ___ Cycling Club on Zwift. I would be remiss not to mention our first ever club ride that took place Friday evening, October 16, 2015.

8 o’clock that evening was the best time for our international group of cyclists. Kev Wells from Australia was the one who actually rode with us on Saturday in order to make it. Julynn Washington and Jessee Bennett joined us from North Carolina. There there was me from here in South Carolina.

Sure, it was only four of the possible 10 riders at that time. However, by the time Monday was done the club had grown to 17 members. I think it was partly due to the good time others on Zwift saw us having while we rode together.

I’d also like to think that deep in everyone’s hearts there is a desire to help others. The I Do It For ___ Cycling Club is all about that. It isn’t just about riding the bicycle — or the trainer. It is to use that device as a tool to help others.

<a href="http://lowcadence ou commander”>The first club ride (left to right): Julynn Washington, Kev Wells, Jonathan Pait, and Jesse Bennett

The first club ride (left to right): Julynn Washington, Kev Wells, Jonathan Pait, and Jesse Bennett

That is what the club is about. First, it is to support and encourage each other. While I love a good hard ride and a competitive race as much as the next person, there is also something satisfying about a group ride with many people of varying abilities. I enjoyed pulling along sometimes and other times getting pushed.

Second, the club is about the I Do It For Foundation. I hope the club continues to grow and that the members will catch the vision to help others by doing their own I Do It For campaigns. I also hope that Zwift will be a part of those efforts.

If you would like to join us, I invite you to check out the Unofficial Zwift Team and Club Listing. You will find the link in the menu at the top of this page. Once there, click to join a club and choose I Do It For ___ Cycling Club as the one you wish to join. We’ll get you on the roster and connected in our Facebook group and then you can join us for our next club ride!

Ride On!

Do it for someone you love!

It is that time again — time to place your order for the I Do It For Foundation “I Ride For ___” jersey and shorts. You can show your support for the foundation and more importantly for someone you wish to encourage by wearing the I Ride For ___ jersey in your next event or just anytime you ride. We have the custom order store open until October 26, 2015.

I Ride for Mike. Who do you ride for?

I Ride for Mike. Who do you ride for?

The jersey and shorts are high quality pieces by Starlight Apparel and were designed by Scottie Weiss. We were going for a classic look that is noticeable and yet useful. You’ll love the fit and the finish of this gear. You can also top it off with a wind vest for the cooler days.


Thank you for considering supporting the I Do It For Foundation in this way. The foundation has gone through some challenges over the last year and we have not been able to back as many campaigns as we would like. We would love to gear up to make the 2016 season our best. You can help by gearing up with the I Ride For ___ kit!

It’s an international affair

The Unofficial Zwift Team and Club Listing is continuing to grow. It’s turning into an international affair. “National teams” are popping up every few hours. Pretty soon and we’ll be able to stage another World Championships in Richmond!

Here are the countries represented so far. Some have only just been established without any team members. Others are starting to build quickly to their 15 man roster. A couple of countries have take the Club approach which will not limit members.

Zwift Brazil
  • Zwift tag: BRA
  • Manager: Gabriel Matzenbacher
  • Open (Brazilian Only)
  • Current members: 4
  • Team page
GoZwift Portugal
  • Zwift tag: PT
  • Manager: Braulio Afonso
  • Open (Portuguese Only)
  • Current members: 5
  • Team page
Team Kiwi
  • Zwift tag: TeamKIWI
  • Manager: Craig Hoskin
  • Open (New Zealand)
  • Current members: 1
  • Team page
Cycling South Africa
Belgian Zwift Riders

Do you want to add your country to the mix? You can do so by using the Create a Team form. Give your team a name that easily identifies your country. Yes, there can be more than one country specific team, but they would need to have different names. Designate in your description what types of riders for which you are looking.

What about the USA? Well, I have to give a shout out to the Left Coast Cycling Team. Anybody out there want to start the Right Coast Cycling Team? 😉 There could be a couple in between!

Ride On! Race On!

We’ve got two open teams and three open clubs

It was an exciting weekend at After getting the Unofficial Zwift Team and Club  Listing up and going, it was time to start collecting submissions. We currently have six teams listed and three clubs. There are also over 35 Zwift riders signed up as “unattached.”

Dealing with the unattached riders is going to be the biggest challenge. That will be my next project. However, if you are looking to participate in organized riding/racing on Zwift, consider one of these before jumping into the draft.

Available Teams

Left Coast Cycling Team
  • Zwift tag: Team LC
  • Manager: Ron Sines
  • Open
  • Current members: 3
  • Team page
Wheeling Through Fitness
  • Zwift tag: RSA-Cycling
  • Manager: Wesley Briant
  • Open
  • Current members: 1
  • Team page

Available Clubs

I Do It For ___ Cycling Club

MZGR Cycling Club

Cycling South Africa

Check out the entire listing at