Kevin Cody

Manhattan Beach Tour de Pier spin-a-thon exceeds $500,000 goal

Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page
Terry Moseley of Manhattan Beach, Sukari Rodgers of Hawthorne and Jennifer Waby of El Segundo and Sukari Rodgers of Hawthorne await their turn to ride for team Heather Allman. Photos by Kevin Cody

Terry Moseley of Manhattan Beach, Sukari Rodgers of Hawthorne and Jennifer Waby of El Segundo await their turn to ride for team Heather Allman. Photos by Kevin Cody

After only its second year, the Tour de Pier has achieved signature event status in Manhattan Beach.Sunday morning, while the 8th and final stage of the Tour of California was finishing up in Thousand Oaks, 1,200  Tour de Pier spin cyclists were racing in teams of four on 300 stationary bikes overlooking the Manhattan Beach pier.

Beach volleyball gold medalist and Dig for Kids founder Eric Fonoimoana gives his legs a workout.

Beach volleyball gold medalist and Dig for Kids founder Eric Fonoimoana gives his legs a workout.

Local beach volleyball Olympic gold medalists Eric Fonoimoana and Kerri Walsh-Jennings, Long Beach Olympic cyclist Tony Cruz and Palos Verdes big wave rider Alex Gray led the riders from a stage at the head of the pier.

Mira Costa senior and Police Explorer Scout Kelly Sass

Mira Costa senior and Police Explorer Scout Kelly Sass gets squirted.

Manhattan police officers and firefighters, including Police Chief Eve Irvine and Battalion Chief  Ron Laursen, Los Angeles County Lifeguards and local businesses, including the Zislis Restaurant Group and Shorewood Realtors sent teams.

Manhattan Beach Police Chief Eve Irvine (standing, third from left) and members of the      Manhattan Beach police and fire departments.

Manhattan Beach Police Chief Eve Irvine (standing, third from left) and members of the Manhattan Beach police and fire departments. The police were sponsored by Trilogy Spa and the firefighters by BellaBeach.

Manhattan Beach resident Jon Hirshberg came up with the idea after learning of a national spinning  fundraiser that raised over $3 million in one day. Following the death of his father in 1997, at age 54, Hirshberg and his step mother Agi founded the Hirshberg Foundation, which has raised over $23 million to fund pancreatic cancer research at UCLA.

Tyler Hirsberg improvises on the standard spin. Tyler is the son of Tour de Pier co-founder John Hirshberg

Tyler Hirshberg lends support to dad Jon’s tribute to Tyler’s granddad, who died of pancreatic cancer.

For the Tour de Pier, he enlisted the help of fellow Manhattan Beach resident and cycling enthusiast Heath Gregory, who had participated in a similar spinning fundraiser produced by the Livestrong Foundation in Bacelona during the 2009 Tour de France.

an Beach View School team riders Julian and Tony Sciarrino.

Manhattan Beach Grand View School team riders Juliana and Tony Sciarrino.

Heath is a partner in The Strand House, overlooking the Manhattan Beach Pier. In the weeks leading up to the Tour de Pier, The Strand House offered an anti-oxident, cancer-fighting menu to help raise awareness about the effect of diet on cancer prevention.

Joel Gitelson rises the rescue can and Kevin Barry signals number 1 for the Los Angeles County Lifeguard team.

Joel Gitelson raises the rescue can and Kevin Barry signals number 1 for the Los Angeles County Lifeguard team.

Last year’s inaugural Tour de Pier raised $339,000 and earned the City of Manhattan Beach the Outstanding Special Events Award from the California Association of Parks and Recreational Commissioners.

Among the Tour de Pier’s original supporters is legendary South Bay racer and bike store owner Ted Ernst, founder of the South Bay Wheelmen.

Over 1,200 cyclists participated in the Tour de Pier at the Manhattan Beach pier.

Over 1,200 cyclists participated in the Tour de Pier at the Manhattan Beach pier.

Sunday’s Tour de Pier raised $503,00 for the Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research, the Livestrong Foundation and the Cancer Support Community Redondo Beach.  For more information visit TourDePier.

comments