Tucson Medical Center “It’s a Good Fit For Us” To Be El Tour Title Sponsor

Monday, November 2nd, 2015

Julia Strange has ridden in El Tour de Tucson eight times and is looking forward to No. 9 on Nov. 21, 2015.

How could she not? After all, the company she works for – Tucson Medical Center – is the new title sponsor for the event that will be in its 33rd year.

TMC’s Julia Strange is a veteran rider of El Tour.   Casino Del Sol Photo

TMC’s Julia Strange is a veteran rider of El Tour.
Casino Del Sol Photo

Tucson Medical Center 33rd El Tour de Tucson presented by Casino Del Sol Resort has a nice ring to it.

As she said, “It’s a good fit for us.”

“I’m a lifelong cyclist and there’s something about El Tour that, if you know about it and live here, it’s one of those things you keep going back to,” said Strange, vice president of community benefit, Tucson Medical Center.

Like Julia, many of the more than 8,500 cyclists who ride in El Tour are return riders. In fact, each year more than 50 percent of those who ride in El Tour enjoy it so much they come back. It’s because of the sponsors – big and small – that make the event so enjoyable.

TMC, the continuing sponsor of El Tour’s Fun Ride, has helped El Tour immensely in 2015 in becoming the title sponsor, the 12th in Perimeter’s 33-year history.

“We’re proud and excited to have Tucson Medical Center in a newly expanded role in El Tour,” said Richard DeBernardis, founder & president of El Tour de Tucson. “They have stepped into the position of title sponsor after having been associated with us for many years in other ways.

“TMC has a reputation in the community for programs including wellness, education and information – a perfect fit with El Tour’s mission of bicycling for better mental and physical health.”

TMC is expected to have more than 50 riders for this year’s event. Julia will be one of them.

She’s seen some very good riding days and, well, not so good, but as she said she keeps coming back.

She said she had “a terrible ride” about seven years ago. It included two flat tires in the first five miles. It had her finishing in almost eight hours or almost 90 minutes longer than it normally would have taken.

“The whole ride passed me by; it was me and a Bike Patrol guy,” She said. “The cops had opened the streets by the time I got my flats all fixed. I finished it, but I said I’d never ride El Tour again.

“But, it drew me back in. It’s got that spirit and tradition that is so special.”

It didn’t hurt that after her trouble in the first five miles she eventually passed about 1,500 riders and was pleased with her performance.

What’s important, she said, is that the ride brings a healthy “economic investment to the community” helps a number of great worthwhile beneficiaries and “brings teams together in a way they wouldn’t otherwise.”

She pointed out TMC serves the whole southern Arizona region, it “circles the region” just like El Tour does. She said, “El Tour is Tucson.”

Then added: “Our tagline is: We Are Tucson.”

“We are so excited to step into this role so we can continue this tradition for Tucson,” she said.

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