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Pre-Fondo ride is back

Riders looking to get in a good training ride to prepare for September's RBC GranFondo Whistler can take part in the second annual PrimaFondo - a warm-up event by Corsa Cyles in Squamish that includes rides through Squamish and Paradise Valley before returning to Corsa for a catered barbecue lunch. The ride will get underway at 11 a.m. and finish at 1 p.m.

Specialized Bicycles will be at the start to loan out demo road bikes, but a limited number are available and you'll need to contact Corsa by Friday to reserve one.

The ride and the lunch are free, but you'll need to RSVP to secure a place in the pack and lunch table.

The event is co-sponsored by the RBC GranFondo Whistler and Specialized Bikes.

The GranFondo itself is set for Sept. 10, starting in downtown Vancouver and heading through Stanley Park and across the Lions Gate Bridge before climbing Taylor Way to access the Sea to Sky Highway. The event finishes in Whistler, with a total distance of just over 120 km.


Osborne-Paradis apologizes

It takes a certain kind of daring to ski down an icy slope at 120 km/h, but Whistler's Manuel Osborne-Paradis knows he pushed things a little too far last week when he tried to jump onto the back of a bus after a few drinks at the Calgary Stampede. His clothing got caught on a trailer hitch and he was dragged about 80 metres before the bus stopped.

The stunt earned him a $115 fine from the Calgary police under the Traffic Safety Act, but the more serious aspect is his injury - road rash so bad that he spent a week recovering in the Foothills Hospital burn unit.

It also set back his rehabilitation. Osborne-Paradis tore the ACL in his left knee and broke his fibula while racing in Chamonix last winter.

"I would like to apologize for the embarrassment that my actions have caused," he said in a statement. "I would like to say sorry to my fans, my sponsors, Alpine Canada and in particular all the children and teenagers who look up to me as an Olympian and World Cup skier.

"Over the past few days I have received excellent care from all the staff in the burn unit at Foothills Hospital. I have spent time meeting and talking to patients who are facing some very serious health challenges. Meeting them has helped me realize that I'm really lucky to be here today. I'm fortunate that my injuries were not more serious, and that I will be able to resume my ski career in the coming months and return to the sport that I love. Once I am released from hospital, I am to return to Foothills as a volunteer."


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