Local winners of the EZBike Challenge have been announced.
Jessica from Santa Barbara was the first-place winner of the Electra Townie Go! 7D. (Last names of the winners were not listed in a news release.)
“I started biking around this year after taking a confident cycling class from the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition (SBBIKE+COAST),” Jessica said in the news release. “Our city cycling guru, Sam, really helped me get over my fears, and I love it! Having State Street closed to cars definitely helped me get my skill level up.”
Nikolaus of Las Cumbres Observatory in Goleta is one of the 600 participants in the EZBike Challenge and winner of an electric bicycle.
To qualify to win one of three electric bicycle or weekly prizes, the public was encouraged to ride any bike for eight days in May during national bike month and log their trips on smartride.org/#/.
Nikolaus was also the second-place winner in the Story Bikes Commuter category,
“Biking makes me feel young and strong. Riding around Goleta/SB on my bike (especially in the early mornings) helps clear my head and elevate my mood,” said Nikolaus.
Chelsey of Santa Barbara was the third-place winner of the iZip Sumo winner. “I love biking because it’s an efficient, convenient, and low impact option for getting around Santa Barbara,” Chelsey said.
More than 600 people participated in the first-ever EZBike Challenge, exceeding expectations. Participants made more than 10,000 bike trips covering more than 45,000 miles. The combined calories burned is the equivalent of 9,080 street tacos.
According to the news release, the competition helped to inspire new options for commuters to travel and make a lifestyle change that improves air quality and reduces traffic congestion.
“We are all looking for new ways to save money on gas these days,” said Kent Epperson, director of the Santa Barbara County Association of Government’s Traffic Solutions division. “All month-long, we asked the public to rise to the EZBike Challenge, and they did. Participation exceeded our expectations as we saw more people discover efficient and convenient ways to travel around town on a bike.”
In addition to the first EZBike Challenge, 15 other in-person events took place during the National Bike Month celebration.
Employers, adults, families and kids joined in on the joy of biking through activities that included electric bicycle showcases and demos, education on safe riding and bike maintenance, nature rides, a Chicano culture and history ride, and the mayor’s ride.
For residents who were not able to ride a bike, CycleMAYnia partnered with Cycling Without Age to offer accessible, piloted trishaw rides.
“Just going for a ride gives us a chance to share a wave and smile with others in the community,” said John Boettner, founder of Santa Barbara Cycling without Age. “Even on a short ride, we all wave and smile more times than we have smiled or waved in days, weeks, or even months. Imagine if we all bicycled once a week or once a month, what a joyful difference that would make in our neighborhoods and our community.”
For more information, visit cyclemaynia.org.
Those interested in driving less, using sustainable transportation and saving money can call SBCAG Traffic Solutions at 805-963-SAVE or visit trafficsolutions.org.