Victor Valley Bicycle Tour returns for second year; will honor two local enthusiasts

Cyclists are expected at the starting line Saturday for the 2nd annual Victor Valley Bicycle Tour, which is being held in honor of two local bicycle enthusiasts who died this year.


VVBT President Thurston “Smitty” Smith told the Daily Press some 80 participants preregistered for the event that kicks off with a 100-mile ride at 8 a.m.

“It’s already becoming a Southern California event,” Smith said, “and we’re hoping it keeps growing. We have riders coming from outside the area. San Diego, Ventura, Malibu, Orange County, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, Los Angeles. They’re all coming, and I’m really excited because when I get involved in something, I’m all the way in.”

Four routes are available for riders of all skill levels, including distances of 10, 25 and 62 miles that cut challenging or fun paths — depending on the distance — through Hesperia, Oak Hills, Apple Valley and Victorville.

VVBT board member Michele Rivas designed each of this year’s routes, according to Smith.

“She’s an avid rider,” he said. “Her and (fellow board member) Todd Matthews will go do 40 miles in an afternoon just to relax. It’s unbelievable.”

The tour is being held in honor of late bicycle enthusiasts Chuck Hanson and Carol Pulice, who died in July and September, respectively.

Hanson started the Chuck Hanson Tour de Apple Valley, which eventually transformed into the Victor Valley Bicycle Tour, and Pulice was an avid bicycle enthusiast, Smith previously told the Daily Press.

“We’re going to honor Chuck Hanson (with a ribbon) … (and) we’re doing the same thing for Carol Pulice,” Smith said. “Carol’s ribbon is pink for her breast cancer and Chuck’s will be white because he had lung cancer. We want to honor those members of the community that we’ve lost because they were big into bicycles and bicycle safety.”

Early registration begins Saturday at 5 a.m. at the Courtyard Marriott located at 9619 Mariposa Road in Hesperia and extends until 9 a.m. The start times for each route will be staggered, but each ride starts and ends on Mountain Vista Avenue.

Proceeds from the 2016 Victor Valley Bike Tour will be used to promote California’s “3 feet for safety” act in the High Desert, which requires drivers to give bicyclists three feet of space before passing.

The money will be used to purchase permanent bicycle-safety signage to be displayed throughout the High Desert’s three largest municipalities.

“We’re really trying to push public-safety awareness,” Smith said. “Keep an eye out for the riders (during the tour). All the riders will be abiding by all the laws. Just be careful and watch out for the riders as this event continues to grow. I’m really looking forward to it.”

For more information on the Victor Valley Bicycle Tour, visit

2016 Victor Valley Bicycle Tour

Source: Matt Cabe, Daily Press