Riders from the Rally Cycling men's and women's teams will be racing on custom, hand-painted bikes at the upcoming Amgen Women's Race May 11-14 and Tour of California May 14-20, competing on the Diamondback machines during the WorldTour races and then auctioning them online, with proceeds going to the UnitedHealthcare Children's Foundation.
Ridden by two women and six men, the bikes were inspired by eight children who have benefited from the foundation's grants.
The bikes, named Sky, Firefighter, Artist, Snake, Plants, Science, Camo, and Speed, were hand painted in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Each bike is outfitted with team components, while answers provided by the children inspired the concepts. A custom logo with each child's name adorns the frames.
"Riding such unique bikes for a good cause is truly an honor," said Rally's Sepp Kuss, who will be starting the biggest race of his career next week in California. "The designs are spectacular, and knowing they were inspired by ideas from children who have overcome serious medical conditions is extremely motivating. My hope is that seeing these bikes on television inspires these kids, and kids everywhere, to never give up and shoot for the stars."
The bikes will be available for bidding online May 9-20, with 100 percent of the proceeds going to benefit the UHCCF, which provides grants to families who need financial assistance to help pay for their children’s health care treatments, services or equipment not covered, or not fully covered, by their commercial health insurance plans.
Click or swipe through the gallery to see the details of each bike.
Age: 4 years old
Home State: Colorado
Inspiration for Bike: "I want to fly because I want to see everything from above and see everything in the sky like airplanes and birds real close."
Sky is inspired by Romie, 4, of Colorado's super power of choice, and it's a beauty. For a superpower, Romie would "want to fly, because I want to see everything from above and see everything in the sky like airplanes and birds real close." Her response opened a universe of possibilities for our design team. This atmospheric look features a base coat faded from sky to midnight blue, but it's the embellishments that truly realize Romie's vision – a starry sky, whispy white clouds, and a flock of birds take this bike intro the stratosphere. Sky is a 52 cm frame ridden by Emma White.
Age: 8 years old
Home State: West Virginia
Inspiration for Bike: "a firefighter because they help save people."
Firefighter is inspired by Bryce, 8, of West Virginia. When Bryce grows up, he wants to be "a firefighter, because they help save people." The design begins with a bright, firetruck-red base-coat and is accented with real gold leaf throughout – inside the chainstays and inside the primary Diamondback logo, which is styled in classic firefighter 3D lettering. The front-end of this engine is finished with a chrome fork and pearl white cockpit. We can practically hear the sirens. Firefighter is a 56cm frame ridden by Matteo Dal-Cin.
Age: 9 years old Home State: Texas
Inspiration for Bike: "I want to be an artist because you can use your imagination to create something that people will enjoy looking at forever."
A wise response to the question, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" inspired Artist. Preston, 9, of Texas "wants to be an artist, because you can use your imagination to create something that people will enjoy looking at forever." In a style reminiscent of Jackson Pollock's iconic abstract expressionism, the bike begins with a black "canvas" and is drizzled with primary colors and finished with baby blue chainstay, fork and logo accents. For those of us who remember it, this bike may also remind us of a certain decade with a very distinct aesthetic. Artist is a 54 cm frame ridden by Sepp Kuss.
Age: 9 years old
Home State: Utah
Inspiration for Bike: "The green anaconda is my favorite animal. It has a dinosaur ancestor and it is the biggest and heaviest snake."
Snake is inspired by Nathan, 9, of Utah. Nathan’s favorite animal is "the Green Anaconda. It has a dinosaur ancestor and it is the biggest and heaviest snake." This bike practically hisses, the result of a complex paint process. Scales are applied by hand in sheets of hand-weeded, laser-cut stickers, and blended into a pure green hue near the bike’s joints. A deep crimson serves as the "underbelly" on the stays, fork, and logo accents. The real snake magic comes from a space-age clear coat that returns a rainbow of iridescent hues in sunlight. Snake is a 56 cm frame ridden by Eric Young.
Age: 7 years old
Home State: Washington
Inspiration for Bike: "I like science because we learn about plants growing."
Our vibrant Plants bike is inspired by Anuhea, 7, of Washington. Anuhea’s favorite subject in school is “science, because we learn about plants growing." Two layers of colorful leaves, hand drawn and inspired by exotic vegetation, are applied to a deep purple base-coat and finished with pearl white logo accents. Equal parts Miami pastel and organic goodness, Plants is one of our most lush, eye popping looks. Plants is a 52cm frame ridden by Kirsti Lay.
Age: 10 years old
Home State: Florida
Inspiration for Bike: "I like math and science because I like experiments."
Noah, 10, of Florida provided the inspiration for Science. In our survey, Noah said, "I like math and science, because I like experiments." We did our own experiment and used a unique masking technique to color the frame. It starts with a vibrant, 5-color fade, followed by a coat of pearl white. Clusters of molecules allow the colorful gradient to peek through, also on full display inside the chainstays and fork. The Diamondback logo is displayed in a one-of-a-kind outline. Science is a 58cm frame, ridden by Danny Pate.
Age: 8 years old
Home State: Kentucky
Inspiration for Bike: "I like hunting with my dad because it’s really fun and we are putting food on the table."
Camo is inspired by Camden, 8, of Kentucky, whose favorite family activity is "hunting with my dad, because it’s really fun and we are putting food on the table." Well said, Camden. This classic camouflage look begins with an olive green base and is layered with green and tan hued shapes, making this bike the choice for lovers of one of mankind's oldest outdoor pursuits. Neon blaze orange logo, chainstay and fork accents complete the look, and are sure to add visibility to your next road ride. Camo is a 56 cm frame ridden by Rob Britton.
Age: 11 years old
Home State: West Virginia
Inspiration for Bike: "I would want to be really fast because it would be fun to go fast."
Jacob, 11, of West Virginia inspired Speed. If Jacob had a superpower, he "would want to be really fast, because it would be fun to go fast." To achieve this sleek, metallic look, first a base-coat of real crushed aluminum is applied. A clear coat and transparent "wash" of color follows to create the anodized midnight blue base. Three primary colors, representing prismatic light, streak across the frame, and the crushed aluminum base shows through in the logo accents, inner stays and fork. Speed is a 56cm frame ridden by Adam de Vos.
Growing up in Missoula, Montana, Pat competed in his first bike race in 1985 at Flathead Lake before studying English and journalism at the University of Oregon. He has covered North American cycling extensively since 2009, as well as racing and teams in Europe and South America. Pat currently lives in the US outside of Portland, Oregon.
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