TAYLOR BALAGNO
Youth Ambassador

BORN: 1995

WORK: Grade 7 Student – Collingwood School

PLAY: I love to spend as much time as possible with my horse Mickey. He and I are best friends. When I am not riding I like to play Field Hockey and Track and Field. Or just hanging out with my best friend Ainsley.

INSPIRATION: My dad and his 4 friends that are riding across our country for JDRF.

SOUNDTRACK: Brown Eyed Girl – Van Morrison, Shakedown – Akon, Umbrella - Rihanna

TOP 5:
1. Getting my new insulin pump
2. Winning Ribbons in horse competitions
3. Doing well at school
4. Traveling with my family
5. Getting a new bike.

MESSAGE: I am so proud of my dad, his team of riders and friends that are helping us ride across Canada. I know that we will find a cure soon and all the type 1 kids and me will start to live a normal life with out having to worry about managing our disease.

Download Taylor's full bio.




MATT YOUNG
Ride Captain

BORN: 1971

WORK: President, Innovative Fitness

PLAY: Accomplishing things I’m not supposed to.

INSPIRATION: The feeling you get at the end of an challenging journey.

SOUNDTRACK: Creed, My Sacrifice.

TOP 5:
1. 36 hour Adventure Race
2. Hiking the Grand Canyon
3. Ironman Canada
4. New York Marathon
5. Test of Metal

MESSAGE: H2V is an opportunity to fulfill a dream of riding across the country with great people, while benefiting a population born to a disease needing a cure. It is that simple.

Download Matt's full bio.




RICHARD ALM

BORN: 1974

WORK: Events Manager & Professional Coach, Innovative Fitness

PLAY: High-octane sports and exploring the globe for me please!
Inspiration: Witnessing a great leader, being part of a team and the freedom of choice.

SOUNDTRACK: Electronica, Hip Hop, Drum and Bass, Reggae

TOP 5:
1. Hiking the Himalayas
2. 1 day Seattle to Portland road ride
3. Multiple 10km runs
4. Grass roots 100km road rides
5. Skydiving

MESSAGE: I have always enjoyed both working with a team and achieving personal goals. H2V will be a powerful combination of both. Riding across my country for a cause that is close to my heart will be a great honour.

Download Richard's full bio.




WILLIE CROMACK

BORN: 1972

WORK: Principal, John Henry Bikes
Principal, Hire Me Ltd.

PLAY: Anything outdoors that keeps me moving my body.

INSPIRATION: Seeing someone overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles to discover their true potential.

SOUNDTRACK: Bob Marley, Trenchtown Rock and Lively Up Your Life

TOP 5:
1. Playing soccer for the under 21,
Canadian National team
2. Road to Mexico with my family
3. Winning the Premier’s Athletic
Award Scholarship
4. Co-authoring Hire Me. (2006)
5. Being nominated for Entrepreneur of the Year in 2002

MESSAGE: From the riders’ ambitions to the dreams of the charity itself, it will be a joy to see such grand goals realized. I want to do all I can to see that every child grows up feeling that they live in a world of promise. I commit 100% to making the ride, donations and sponsorship an unprecedented success.

Download Willie's full bio.




KEITH NICOLL

BORN: 1970

WORK: Shoe Salesman/Event Manager
Owner – North Shore Athletics
President – Run The North Shore Event Management

PLAY: Riding my bikes (all 6 of them), Snowshoeing, Skiing ( all types), Wave Pool with Family, Playing with Dog.

INSPIRATION: My daughter Kallym who is 4 1/2. Anyone who is out doing what they love to do.

SOUNDTRACK: Anything with the Foo Fighters or Lincoln Park

TOP 5:
1. Iron Man x 3
2. Won Entrepreneur of the Year in 2002, Nominated for Best Employer in 2006, Nominated for Best Business in 2006, 2001 and 2004.
3. Sea 2 Summit with my friends x 5
4. Daughters first day on Skis with me
5. Losing 30 pounds when I met my wife

MESSAGE: I want to ride as hard as I can and raise as much money as I can, for the families that have to deal with JD every day. I am one of those people that can’t stand seeing children in distress. Everytime I see a Childrens Hospital commercial I cry.

Download Keith's full bio.




KYLE BALAGNO

BORN: 1963

WORK: President , Myron Advertising & Design

PLAY: Hitting the beach, the road, or the mountain. The bigger the challenge, the better.

INSPIRATION: Taylor, my 11-year old daughter. Like other parents of Type One children, I am weary of living with the fear that my child may not wake up one morning. I want a cure before my daughter turns 18.

SOUNDTRACK: Johnny Cash, Ring of Fire

TOP 5:
1. Two day adventure race - solo
2. Windsurfing the North Shore of Maui
3. Marathon and 1⁄2 Ironman
4. Cycling up Haleakala Creator, Maui 0 – 10,000 ft
5. Ice climbing Professor Falls – Rundle Ridge in Banff, Alberta

MESSAGE: I would like to thank everyone in advance for making this event such a huge success. Organizing and training takes a significant time commitment so I would also like to thank my family, friends and business associates who have all been generous in affording me the time to do this.

Download Kyle's full bio.




BRYAN KELLY
Support Rider

BORN: 1983

WORK: Marketing Director, North Shore Athletics

PLAY: Long rides on the bike involving sunshine and coffee.

INSPIRATION: Human will

SOUNDTRACK: Scratch Perverts – Essential Mix

TOP 5:
1. Tour de White Rock win
2. Duathlon Nationals
3. Science degree
4. Surviving Dan Proulx’s training camp
5. Family Vacations

MESSAGE: Helping 5 close friends and athletes ride across Canada will be a tremendous honour to me and in the process finding a cure for Juvenile Diabetes I cannot ask for any more.

Download Bryan's full bio.