Johan Bruyneel's Blog
20 July 2011 at 16:15

Thank You, Fatty

This is not what many of you are thinking ... Even though Team RadioShack is down to 5 riders at the Tour de France, I'm sorry - it's just not possible for The Fat Cyclist and Team Fatty members to fill the 4 vacant spots. It's obvious Fatty would certainly be the first up Alpe d'Huez, but my hands are tied on this one ... But I think I have something pretty cool, so read on ...

For those of you who may not know or remember, in late 2009 I came across a letter from The Fat Cyclist. In this letter, Fatty listed the many reasons that he should be offered a job as a cyclist on Team RadioShack. I got a good laugh from it and decided to write him back giving him the opportunity to come to Team RadioShack's training camp, if and only if, he raised a certain amount of money for LIVESTRONG and World Bicycle Relief. When it was all said and done, Fatty raised over $60,000 for each charity. And like I promised, Fatty came to Team RadioShack's camp and rode with Lance, Horner, Klodi and the rest of the team. We put together some webisodes, so if you haven't seen them, be sure to check them out. Needless to say, Fatty didn't make the team, but we still had a great time and managed to raise money for two great causes.

After the camp, Fatty and I continued to keep in touch and he even joined me in the car during the 2010 Amgen Tour of California time trial. Though Fatty's a cycling fan and a pretty good cyclist himself, our conversations always seemed to be centered on how he can help give back - whether it's to people battling cancer or to underprivileged school children in Africa who have to walk as long as 4 hours roundtrip to and from school. He's just a guy who wants to help and in the process has done some extraordinary things. Since I met Fatty in 2009, he's managed to help raise money for over 650 bikes to be distributed to school children in Zambia. It's pretty remarkable if you ask me.


A little earlier this year, I did a live online chat with Fatty on his website. At the end, Fatty mentioned finding another fun challenge for him (remember Fatty??). It took a few months to come up with something good, but I think we did it. But before we challenge Fatty and Team Fatty, we wanted to thank him ... So Fatty - For all the work you have done in leading the mission of WBR, we are inviting you and your wife Lisa on an all expenses paid trip to Africa this Fall where you will experience first-hand the power of bicycles. Eva, Victoria and I went last year and it was a life altering experience to see how a bicycle can change someone's life forever. And I'm sure the same will be for you and Lisa. We learned and saw that students who receive WBR bikes reach school quicker and safer, are more likely to graduate and get a job, as well as attain health and economic benefits. In the end, you're not giving a child $134, you're giving him/her independence and an opportunity for livelihood. There are over 650 people's lives changed because of your leadership and I want you to see the power of bicycles!

But you wanted a challenge, so a challenge is what you'll get ... Ready Team Fatty and friends? WBR's goal is to provide 50,000 school children with special WBR bikes. To date, they've provided over 12,000 bikes. Impressive, but still a long way to go. So we need your help! If 1,000 bikes (aka 1,000 lives changed) are raised for Zambian school children between now and the second to last stage of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge in Colorado (Aug 27), a random donor of the challenge will be chosen to join Fatty in Africa (all expenses paid) and experience the power of bicycles. We'll call it - Grand Slam For Zambia - 1,000 Bikes, 1,000 Lives Changed.  That person will also help Fatty put special WBR - Team Fatty stickers on all the WBR bikes raised from this challenge!

So if you're asking how much needs to be raised to get to 1,000 WBR bikes? Each bike is $134 so $134,000. But the World Bicycle Relief Africa Trip is not all that's available to win!! We've reached out to some people and companies who want to help Team Fatty reach this goal and have obtained some amazing prizes, including Giro helmets, Road ID gift certificates, Strider No Balance Bikes, HED wheels, a SRAM RED group, signed jerseys and more!  Maybe I should also mention the Team RadioShack Trek Madone Bike , Trek Travel 2012 Tour de France Paris Trip and an official 2003 Tour de France Yellow Podium Tunic signed by Lance Armstrong (this tunic was generously donated by collector and WBR supporter, Roy Wiggins - thank you Roy!).  Not a bad list of prizes, huh??

So here's how you can help change 1,000 lives AND win some pretty cool prizes ...

- For every $5.00 donated here, you get one (1) entry to win many great prizes. The more money you donate, the more chances you have to win.

- If you donate $134, which equals one WBR bike, you will receive thirty (30) entries to win (an extra 3) plus be sent a Grand Slam for Zambia sticker, the same one that will be placed on the WBR bikes in Zambia.

- For the SRAM Red Group, Team RadioShack Trek Madone (race ridden by a Team RadioShack rider), 2003 Tour de France Yellow Podium Tunic signed by Lance Armstrong, Trek Travel 2012 Tour de France Paris Trip, and World Bicycle Relief Africa Trip ... Those prizes will only be made available when certain bike milestones are met.  You can see those milestones below.  The other prizes don't have a bike milestone associated with them.  So regardless of how many bikes are raised, those prizes will be available at the end.  But my advice and hope - let's get to the 1,000 bikes milestone!

- The drawing will take place on the final day of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge in Colorado (you DO NOT need to be present), which means the opportunity to enter will end on August 27, 2011 at 11:59 PM USA Mountain Time. After the final stage, we will randomly draw as many names as prizes we have. The first name we draw will have the first choice to choose one prize, the second name will have the second choice to choose one prize, and so on until we don't have any more prizes left.

So it's simple …

The more you donate, the more prizes will become available, the more chances you have to win and most importantly - the more lives you change.

Good luck and on behalf of all my friends at World Bicycle Relief and the thousands of WBR bike recipients - THANK YOU.

Johan Bruyneel


A trip like no other!  A Grand Slam for Zambia donor will randomly be chosen to join Fatty, his wife Lisa and other WBR guests to Zambia (October or November 2011) where they will experience the power of the bicycle.  Witness bicycles as an empowering tool in the fight against poverty. Build your own World Bicycle Relief bike and ride along with rural HIV/AIDS caregivers, students and business entrepreneurs whose lives have been transformed by the power of bicycles.  You'll also be part of a bicycle distribution ceremony for school children at a local school. Guaranteed that you'll come back with a new perspective on life and a true appreciation for the power of bicycles! Learn more about the great work of World Bicycle Relief.



Every cycling fan's dream - to attend cycling's biggest spectacle, the Tour de France.  Thanks to the #1 Tour operator, Trek Travel, one lucky donor will be in Paris for the exciting finish in 2012, where you’ll witness the action first-hand as the entire cycling world reaches its peak in July. Trek Travel has developed an itinerary designed to showcase this great event and the dramatic conclusion of three weeks of electrifying racing as the peloton speeds over the famous cobblestone Avenue des Champs-Elysées. You’ll welcome the team to Paris in style, with elegant accommodations, an exclusive race viewing, and the culture and romance of Paris at your feet.  Discover the beauty of Paris and the Tour de France with Trek Travel.

This could be YOU in 2012!


After every stage, Tour de France organizers present the leader with the iconic Yellow Jersey.  But this is not just any Yellow Jersey that can be found in a store!  It's actually an official Yellow Podium Presentation Tunic (the one that zips in the back and goes over the jersey)! Generously donated by collector Roy Wiggins and signed by Lance Armstrong, this 2003 Yellow Podium Tunic (Lance's 5th Tour de France title) is a very rare piece of cycling history that will fall into one lucky winner's hands!





It's simple - There's no better bike than a Trek.  How's 9 Tours de France titles for proof?!?  One lucky winner will receive an official Team RadioShack Trek Madone bike, ridden in a race by one of the Team RadioShack riders (rider bike depends on winner's bike size). The bike comes complete with SRAM and Bontrager components.  Learn more about Trek Bikes.



Note: Warranty does not apply to Team bikes.


The Pro Gruppo. SRAM RED is the first choice for riders and racers who won’t accept any compromise. The most challenging races in the world have been won on SRAM RED, including the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and Paris-Roubaix. Its success in the pro peloton speaks for itself, delivering best-in-class performance, weight and function that the world’s best riders rely on. Learn how to make the leap!



Ardennes, Bastogne, Kermesse, if you think classic Belgian racing when you hear these words then HED named them right. For HED, these wheels evoke cobbles, the hard men of the spring classics, hard training, and serious racing. Ardennes SL is HED's best selling wheel and for good reason. It is the original Ardennes and for 2011 is upgraded with a carbon front hub and a new rear wheel lacing pattern to enhance power transmission and lateral stiffness. The SL utilizes the same high performance scandium C2 rim as its big brother the Ardennes Flamme Rouge.  Learn more about these great wheels at HED Cycling.



Weighing in at only 222 grams, this helmet is almost 25% lighter than Ionos and has 24 Wind Tunnel Vents, enhanced with internal channeling to actively move air through the helmet for maximum cooling.  Giro is committed to keeping heads safe through their maximum comfort and protection design.  With that, it's no surprise that the top ProTour teams wear Giro. Visit Giro to learn more about keeping cool and staying safe on the bike!



If you are a cyclist, runner, triathlete or just a person who doesn't sit on the couch all day then Road ID is for you. This awesome piece of gear not only looks good but it could save your life. In the event of an accident, if you can't speak for yourself, your Road ID will. Available in 8 different styles, including one for pets!! It's not just a piece of gear - it's peace of mind. (Wrist ID Elite shown - $29.99). Learn how to stay safe by visiting Road ID. 




Boasting some of the top riders in the pro peloton, Team RadioShack has accumulated 22 wins thus far and is on a mission for more.  Supporting WBR, the following items have been donated by the team:



  • 2011 Team RadioShack Kit (jersey, shorts, cycling cap, water bottle)
  • 2011 Team RadioShack jersey signed by the following members of the 2011 Tour de France Team - Levi Leipheimer, Markel Irizar, Dmitriy Muravyev, Sergio Paulinho, & Haimar Zubeldia
  • 2011 Team RadioShack cycling cap signed by the following members of the 2011 Tour de France Team - Levi Leipheimer, Markel Irizar, Dmitriy Muravyev, Sergio Paulinho, & Haimar Zubeldia
  • 2011 Team RadioShack water bottle signed by the following members of the 2011 Tour de France Team - Levi Leipheimer, Markel Irizar, Dmitriy Muravyev, Sergio Paulinho, & Haimar Zubeldia

Follow Team RadioShack


Spread the mission and work of World Bicycle Relief with some great looking casual & racing apparel.  Included in the raffle are the following:

  • WBR Casual Apparel Package (WBR t-shirt, safari shirt & socks)
  • Two (2) WBR Racing Apparel Package designed and donated by Pactimo (jersey, shorts & water bottle)


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