Ruhlman rides 100-miles for Best Buddies Challenge to benefit the intellectually challenged San Simeon, Calif. (Sept. 13, 2007) -- Trading four wheels for two this past weekend, top-level driving pro Randy Ruhlman headed to California...
Ruhlman rides 100-miles for Best Buddies Challenge to benefit the intellectually challenged
San Simeon, Calif. (Sept. 13, 2007) -- Trading four wheels for two this past weekend, top-level driving pro Randy Ruhlman headed to California to take part in a very special two-wheel fund raiser - the 2007 Best Buddies Challenge. As well as bicycling down the California Coast for the 100-mile ride, the Grand-Am Daytona Prototype driver was one of the leading individual fundraisers for the benefit of the Best Buddies program.
The Audi Best Buddies Challenge Hearst Castle ride was spearheaded by the First Lady of California, Maria Shriver and was supported by celebrities and sports stars from around the country, as well as professional cyclists from the CSC and T-Mobile teams. The Pacific Coast Highway ride offered uncompromised views. The riders rode south to historic Hearst Castle, across the historic Bixby Bridge, and past waterfalls and beaches dotted with resting sea lions. Once at the finish line, lunch and refreshments were provided in the relaxing atmosphere overlooking San Simeon beach and cove, scenery that could just as easily have come from 'Pirates of the Caribbean'. Here riders and Best Buddies, teams and celebrities like Rob Lowe and Olympian Carl Lewis mingled, giving everyone a chance to get to know each other.
While Randy Ruhlman was among the elite cyclists who pedaled the full 100-miles down the majestic Pacific Coast Highway from Carmel Valley to Hearst Castle, there were other rides available to those with different ability levels of riding, including a 65-mile ride and a 15-mile cruise. A post ride event offered private tours of the Castle, where Ruhlman had a unique opportunity to meet and chat with the Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger. As well as spearheading the event, Schwarzenegger's wife, Maria Shriver is unparalleled her commitment to the program and continues to promote the cause of helping the intellectually challenged in California and nationally through the Best Buddies and the Special Olympics programs.
"It was great to see the level of commitment at this event for the Best Buddies, both individual and corporate," explained Ruhlman. "Personally, I want to thank the people who helped me try to make a difference and for supporting such a great cause. I'm really impressed by the generosity they showed. This program has such a positive impact on people's lives. One hundred percent of the money raised goes to help the intellectually disabled fulfill their potential by arranging employment opportunities and one-on-one friendships. I was proud to be part of this event and meet a great group of inspirational people and can't wait to ride here again next year.""
"One of the really enjoyable 'perks' of racing has always been the opportunity to interact with fans, customers and enthusiasts across the country. Whenever I can, I've been trying to combine my job as a driver with my passion for cycling in a positive way. Hopefully, we can bring more visibility, awareness and a different demographic to many well-deserving charities.
Randy Ruhlman, a native of Greensboro, NC, has driven the past two years in the Preformed Line Products Daytona Prototype in the Rolex Grand-Am Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve. Ruhlman, also a veteran of the popular Trans-Am Series, has extensive racing experience. He was the top American driver in the 2005 Trans-Am Drivers' Championship, holding the points lead throughout the season and scoring a pair of wins--the season opener at the Long Beach Grand Prix and the Cleveland Grand Prix. He was named the 2005 BBS "Most Improved Driver of the Year" and makes the record books as fourth in Top Ten finishes in Trans-Am history. Concentrating most recently on road racing, Ruhlman spent many years driving the ovals and road courses of the ASA and the NASCAR short track series.
An avid cyclist, Ruhlman has tried hard to combine his off-track passion with his professional life, lending his support and time to charities like the Best Buddies and the Lance Armstrong Foundation. In addition, he is also involved with other bike-related Foundations, including the Davis Phinney Foundation to fight Parkinson's disease and many of Cleveland's University Hospital and Health Services Outreach Programs, including bicycle safety helmets and safety seats for children and seat belt awareness.