Local biker in 20th year of ride for MS

Joe McWilliams
Lakeside Leader

MS Bike – Leduc to Camrose, is an annual fundraising ride to support research into multiple sclerosis. It’s been going on for 28 years (this year’s is the 29th) and one Slave Laker has been doing it annually for 20 of those years.

“It’s rewarding,” says Pat Potvin. “It’s the largest fundraiser in Canada for MS.”

MS affects a lot of Canadians. The MS Bike L2C has raised millions over the years for research into a cure; some of it also goes to supporting people with the disease, Potvin says.

Beyond the cause, it’s also a good bit of physical exercise and a fun ride with a lot of other people over two days. It starts in Leduc, at the Ritchie Bros. Auction yard and follows Hwys. 814, 623 and 833 to Camrose – a distance of 85 kilometres. Day 2 starts bright and early at Camrose and heads back to the starting point by a different route, following Hwy. 13 west to Wetaskiwin and then heading north on 814.

It’s a fundraiser, so of course Potvin would like to raise as much in donations as he can.

“My goal this year is $10,000,” he says. “I’m at $3,500.”

There are a couple of ways to donate. Simplest (for many) would be to do it online. The web address is very long, so we won’t put it here. The thing to do is search for the name of the event. When you’ve opened that page, click on ‘donate’ and then do a search for Pat Potvin. The other way is to call him at 780-849-2232.

This year Potvin is riding as part of a 12-member (so far) team called Des’s Team. His nephew Marc is one of the members. Others are welcome, he says.

Another Slave Laker again participating this year is Wayne MacIsaac.

Potvin says as soon as it stops snowing he’ll be doing some training rides around Slave Lake, and welcomes company on them. One ride he does is a loop on the ‘ring road’ around town, which is Caribou Trail, Hwy. 2, Hwy. 88 (on the trail) and back to Caribou. He says this amounts to 8.1 kilometers and he’ll do it several times in one trainng session.

The MS Bike L2C, by the way, is a couple of weeks later this year than it has traditionally been. Potvin says this is due to the impression that late-June weather is likelier to be better. The last few years have been windy and rainy earlier in that month. The dates for 2019 are June 22 and 23.

Pat Potvin on a training ride last year for the Leduc to Camrose MS Ride. He and Wayne MacIsaac of Slave Lake are doing the ride again this year and welcome pledges and more riders if anybody is interested.

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