Just as the world’s best cyclists make their way through Europe for the grueling, 2,187-mile Tour de France this week, a Purcellville couple is navigating the same route in the same number of days.
Scott and Nicole Davison, husband and wife and owners of Veloville USA Bicycles & Coffee in Purcellville, are almost two weeks into the Tour de Force. The 21-day charity ride travels the same route as the pros in the same number of days, but started one week before the Tour de France.
So far, the Davisons have ridden 1,346 miles. They started in Normandy on June 25, and today will ride up Mont Ventoux today; at 6,272 feet the mountain is considered one of the most difficult climbs of the tour.
Scott and Nicole are two of about 40 cyclists who are taking part in Tour de Force. They are the only cyclists from the U.S. on the ride, and Nicole is the only woman riding the full route.
They said challenging themselves to ride the same mountains and distances as the pros has been a longtime dream of theirs. But it’s also an opportunity to raise money for two charities they care about. Tour de Force supports the London-area organization William Wates Memorial Trust and its mission to help disadvantaged young people keep away from a life of crime and violence by engaging them in sports, arts and education. Scott and Nicole Davison are also raising funds for Phoenix Bikes, an Arlington-based charity with similar goals that focuses its efforts on youth in the DC area.
Their donations have fallen short of their $25,000 goal, but they’re hoping to drum up more support during their ride. Donate at crowdrise.com/ridethe21.
Follow their progress through daily photos and posts at Facebook.com/velovilleusa.