Always In Motion

Special Olympics Ontario Partners With Ontario Cycling For Fundraiser Event

Both parties are partnering to support the upcoming Cayuga Velo cycling relay, an event that will also incorporate Ontario Cycling HopON programming, a Unified Cycling event and an opportunity for Special Olympics athletes to embrace the sport of cycling.

Special Olympics Ontario and Ontario Cycling are partnering for the inaugural Cayuga Velo offering a 4 & 8-hour relay on June 3rd. This extraordinary cycling experience is a team fundraising event in support of a fantastic cause that changes the lives of individuals with an intellectual disability through participation in sports. 100% of the rider pledges and donations will directly benefit over 26,000 Special Olympics athletes across the province. Cayuga Velo will take place on the 4-kilometre auto race circuit track at Toronto Motorsports Park and mirrors incredible cycling events on great European racetracks, including Le Mans, Brands Hatch, Zolder and the Nurburgring.

“Special Olympics is dedicated to promoting social inclusion through shared training and competition opportunities. Cayuga Velo will see the introduction of a new Unified sport for Ontario athletes with an intellectual disability (ID) and see them compete and participate alongside their peers without an ID”. Says Glenn MacDonell, President & CEO of Special Olympics Ontario. “This Unified initiative will not only introduce new people to the sport of cycling, but will help create an inclusive atmosphere while breaking down sterotypes, providing sport for ALL”

The cycling relay will be an exciting event, not only for experienced riders, but it will also incorporate Ontario Cycling’s HopON programming.  The program provides an opportunity for Special Olympics athletes to embrace the sport of cycling, learn a little more about cycling and learn how to ride safely. HopOn is a games-based cycling program delivered by Ontario Cycling. and teaches school-aged kids across the province the joys of cycling safely. The program is modelled after Cycling BC’s existing iRide program, overseen by Cycling Canada and delivered locally by our Provincial and Territorial Cycling Associations.

Ontario Cycling will be hosting the HopOn program during the event for athletes with intellectual disabilities. This learn-to-ride program will engage with Special Olympics youth and provide an opportunity to develop on-bike skills and confidence while the fundraising teams race around the track. It is a foundational initiative to increase inclusion, accessibility and safety while helping to build club capacity and help find future champions

“Cycling is not just a sport, but an activity that can be accessible for all levels of ability but also a way to create a community of inclusion and fun with others. The HopOn program is a great way to teach youth and adults alike, useful skills but also how to ride safely on the road. We are thrilled to partner with Special Olympics Ontario to support the Cayuga Velo event to raise funds supporting Special Olympics athletes across the province.”, says Pamela Julian, Ontario Cycling’s President & CEO. “But we also see this is an opportunity to show how powerful sport can be in creating a culture of inclusion and belonging.”

About Special Olympics Ontario

Special Olympics Ontario (SOO) is part of a dynamic worldwide charitable organization dedicated to promoting a more active and better quality of life for people with an intellectual disability. Through sport, the organization is building communities of acceptance and inclusion for all people.

About Ontario Cycling

Ontario Cycling (OC) is the recognized authority by Cycling Canada on all aspects of cycling in Ontario, including Mountain Bike, Para-Cycling, Road, Track, and BMX. All staff are employed by the OC to facilitate the achievement of its long-term vision and planned annual targets. All personnel are required to operate within the policies and procedures as established by the associations volunteer Board of Directors and are expected to act consistently with the association’s values.

Contact – Special Olympics Ontario

Lynn Miller, Senior Manager, Marketing & Business Development

Contact – Ontario Cycling

Patrik Zimmermann – Marketing & Communications Specialist