On Saturday, March 25, 2017, we opened the Team NPF Cycle season with a three-route ride out of Parker, Texas, in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Our armada of riders raised more than $20,000 to help support our mission: to drive efforts to cure psoriatic disease and improve the lives of those affected.
Dr. R. Todd Plott was our Honorary Medical Chair. Dr. Plott, an avid cyclist and a native of Lubbock, Texas, led the Team Dermatology Alliance Riders. They brought in more than $3,400.
“When I was in medical school I received a [University of Texas] research grant to support a unique project for the summer,” Plott wrote about his motivation for getting involved with Team NPF. “Later, that project won first place in a national young investigators competition and secured a place for me in a dermatology residency program. That little grant of just $1,000 changed my life and allowed me to become a dermatologist.”
Melissa Richardson was the top individual rider. “My sister-in-law suffers from psoriatic arthritis and I will be riding 63 miles to help raise funds to find a cure,” she wrote on her profile page. “I feel passionate about this cause because I don’t think there is enough awareness about psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.” Richardson, who was the team captain for NTXWCA (North Texas Women’s Cycling), topped the charts with over $1,240.
The Parker ride is in the record books, but it’s not too late to contribute to this good cause.
“Money raised through this rally will go toward supporting young researchers who just need a chance to prove themselves – just like I did over 30 years ago,” Plott wrote. “Please help make a difference in the life of psoriasis patients by giving these young medical investigators an opportunity to shine.”
Calling all beginners
If you’re new to cycling, you might be wondering how you’re going to keep up with these fanatic Team NPF types. Fear not, Team NPF is a supportive group that wants to have fun riding, raise money, and enjoy the party at the end of their ride.
Joe Cincotta, one of our veteran riders, offers these tips for rookies:
- The best advice for any new cyclist is to be visible. That means bright colors, flashing lights even during the day, and riding in a group. Road cycling can be dangerous because we deal with cars on the road.
- Almost all local bike shops love to help new riders get on two wheels. Let them help you!
- I found that when I was a beginner, and on the road, other cyclists were happy to chat and give me tips.
- Most importantly, cycling is for everyone. Not just someone who is incredibly fit but anyone who loves to ride. What I love is [that cycling] gave me a sense of freedom and a [new] way to enjoy my surroundings.
Lastly, remember the words of Manny Russell, our first Psoriatic Psuperhero and a veteran of Team NPF’s first-ever ride back in August 2015: “I do enjoy cycling – once I get into a shape that’s not round!”
What’s next on the Team NPF Cycle calendar
Team NPF Fun Fact
Everything in Texas is larger than life, even Parker, a city of fewer than 4,000 people. Why? Because Parker is the home of the Southfork Ranch, the setting for the TV show Dallas.
Driving discovery, creating community
For more than 50 years, we’ve been driving efforts to cure psoriatic disease and improve the lives of those affected. But there’s still plenty to do! Learn how you can help our advocacy team shape the laws and policies that affect people with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis – in your state and across the country. Help us raise funds to support research by joining Team NPF, where you can walk, run, cycle, play bingo or create your own fundraising event. If you or someone you love needs free, personalized support for living a healthier life with psoriatic disease, contact our Patient Navigation Center. And keep the National Psoriasis Foundation going strong by making a donation today. Together, we will find a cure.