• Route: Smoky-mountains
  • Ride Year: 2021
  • Hometown: Lewisville, TX

About: Hi, my name is Kirsten and I am a junior here at the University of Texas! I love everything media including writing, video games, and film! I am a huge outdoor girl and adore kayaking. I also love living in Austin because I am a bat fanatic.

Why I Ride

The main reason I ride is because of Mike Ringsdorf.

Mike is my partner's dad, a yogurt aficionado, and one of the most sincere people I have met to this day. Mike was diagnosed with carcinoid cancer in 2007 which affected his colon and liver. After experimental chemo, Mike seemed to be doing better until 2 years later and new spots appeared. For a second time, Mike and his family struggled with the battle against cancer and again Mike emerged victoriously.

Mike went into remission until this past year when another tumor was discovered and he was taken into surgery, and again earlier in 2020. Right now though Mike is doing great and can still easily whoop me in any athletic capacity.

I couldn't think of anyone better to ride for then Mike. The man loves bike riding himself so it only feels fitting. When I told him I was applying he seemed a little skeptical about biking that long of a distance in such a short amount of time, but I'm ready to prove it to him. I want to join Texas 4000 to raise money for cancer programs, especially rare cancers like Mike’s. I hope through my journey I can inspire others with Mike's story of resilience.

I am also riding for my Grandmother, Mary Jean Lauro and Rosemary Cielecki who both passed away from breast cancer.

Just like the bike ride- endurance, sweat, and tears are needed to meet the end goal of ending cancer once and for all. I'm ready to do all of this with these people in my mind and heart.

If you or a loved one is struggling or has passed away from cancer I would also love to ride for you/them. Please feel free to reach out to me.

To Alaska and Back,