Roll hosting SoCal CycleFest

Race commentator and former pro racer Bob Roll at the 2009 Tour of California

Race commentator and former pro racer Bob Roll at the 2009 Tour of California (Image credit: Mark Johnson)

Southern California's CycleFest 2009 will feature Bob "Bobke" Roll as its special guest and host. The event, a fundraiser for the SoCal Interscholastic Cycling League, will take place aboard the historic Queen Mary oceanliner on November 21 and is titled "Bobke on a Boat".

Bob Roll a California native, is a former professional cyclist who first rode for the 7-Eleven Cycling Team. Later in his career, he discovered mountain biking and competed on the professional circuit for eight years until finally retiring in 1998. While Bobke never claimed to be the fastest cyclist, his unmatched story-telling ability made him a hit with the fans and led him to a spot on television, commentating on professional cycling events, including the Tour de France, throughout the world.

Bobke is a larger than life personality. Speaking of his experiences, whether it be at the Tour de France or in the Appalachians of North Carolina on a monsoon-like training ride, Bobke uses his humor, wit and downright outlandish style to capture any audience.

Bobke's attendance at the SoCal League's CycleFest 2009 will help the League reach its fundraising goal of US$30,000.

The event will feature several internationally known Southern California-based cyclists including multi-time world champion Brian Lopes, ultra-endurance champion Pua Sawicki, and Olympian Sid Taberlay.

Team Mata's Sawicki finished seventh at the marathon World Championships in August and won the US 24-hour solo national championships in 2005, 2007 and 2008. Lopes has been inducted into both the Mountain Biking and BMX Halls of Fame, has four world titles, nine national titles and six World Cups. From Australia, Taberlay of Team Sho-Air / Specialized finished second in the 2009 US ProXCT series this year. He's also won the Australian national cross country championships five times.

The fundraiser will also feature a silent auction and a catered dinner. All proceeds from the tickets sales and the silent auction will go toward supporting the SoCal Interscholastic Cycling League.

Tickets are on sale and cost $150. Patron tickets, which include preferred seating and special gifts, are $195.

For tickets and additional information, visit

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Sue George is an editor at Cyclingnews.  She coordinates all of the site's mountain bike race coverage and assists with the road, 'cross and track coverage.