You raised the largest-ever crowd prime for the Pro Women racing in 2012… and again in 2013!!
Last weekend at Saint Francis Tulsa Tough, we gave away a little over $9,000 in primes to all women racers!
SARIS Cycling Group joined in this challenge to not only show it’s support for Saint Francis Tulsa Tough, but also it’s continued commitment to women’s cycling by agreeing to match funds YOU donated! Thank You SARIS!!
For more background on this initiative please read the following story:
Ron LeMieux works for SARIS Cycling Group which is out of Wisconsin. You’ve likely heard of the products that they make right here in the United States: SARIS cycling racks and CycleOps Power. The word “SARIS” is a combination of the names Sara and Chris, the owners of the company. SARIS Cycling Group has participated in Saint Francis Tulsa Tough from the beginning and it’s made such an impression on the company that this year, Sara and Chris Fortune are coming out to experience it for themselves.
Quite a while back, LeMieux met a professional female rider at the event. “She made an impression on me as she was so polite and appreciative of everything.” LeMieux who has Tulsa roots invited her and her team to stay with his parents in host housing the following year…which they did. The more he got to know the female cycling team, the more he could see how much they gave to the sport and furthermore, loved the sport. A few years ago while watching the women’s races at the event he was inspired to collect a crowd prime. He took off his ball cap and passed it around and encouraged the crowd to put money into it to incentivize the women racers.
A “prime” [pronounced “preem”] is a lap in a criterium race where they typically ring a bell. The rider who finishes that lap first wins a gift or cash prize. It’s basically a mini race within a race. Pretty soon LeMieux found the ball cap full of cash to give to the racers. “I was overwhelmed with the generosity of the Tulsa crowd. They were offering up their money for nothing more than support…it was super cool!” says LeMieux.
He was so impressed that he and the SARIS Cycling Group decided to build upon the framework that the Saint Francis Tulsa Tough had already begun of ensuring that women received as much encouragement and support as possible when it came to attending, participating, racing, cheering or riding in their event.
“I asked a few women racers what’s the biggest prime you’ve ever heard of and the number I got back was $1500. ‘Okay.’ I thought. That’s the number to beat.” Last year SARIS Cycling Group launched an online women’s crowd prime where they would match up to $1000 any money donated. The first night of races collected $1600 for the women racers and the second night collected the record of $1700!” Mission accomplished. Record broken.
SARIS Cycling Group is ready to repeat that challenge and again match up to $1000 anything that is donated for the women’s crowd prime. By doing so SARIS Cycling Group, Saint Francis Tulsa Tough hope to spread the cash prize incentives throughout all the eligible women’s fields which will make for some exciting racing! This also sends a strong message to everyone out there that women’s cycling is something that everyone, whether they be sponsor, racer, casual rider or spectator can get behind and are excited to support!
Help them send that message and donate to the SARIS Cycling Group crowd prime today!