Jeff Rose Cycling Race Across Kentucky for Barren Heights
- Author: Terri F.
- Author: Friday, May 18th, 2012
Date: May 11, 2012
For Immediate Release
Title: Jeff Rose’s Race Across Kentucky for Barren Heights
Bowling Green, KY cyclist, Jeff Rose, wants to bring the state crossing record back to Kentucky. It’s currently held by a cyclist from Tennessee. Rose says, “I have two reasons for doing this ride: The first is to raise awareness and funds for Barren Heights Christian Retreat Center, and the second is to be the fastest person to cross Kentucky by bicycle.”
Barren Heights, located on the Barren River, has a mission to simply love and encourage families. They do this by providing free mini-vacation style weekend retreats for families with physically or developmentally disabled children.
Jeff and his wife have three daughters, one with special needs. Annalee lives with Smith Lemli Opitz, a genetic, metabolic syndrome that impacts her globally. Jeff took his family on a Barren Heights retreat in 2006, the first year they opened, and they have returned to volunteer as a family many times since then. "It is always encouraging and uplifting.” adds his wife, Stacey.
Rose wants to get the word out to families with special needs children. “I know that families come from across the region and surrounding states, but I still think there are lots of people in our community that have never heard of Barren Heights.” Barren Heights is a volunteer run organization and is currently raising funds to build a multi-purpose building that will also serve as a storm shelter. “We volunteer our time as a family when we go back and help host retreats. We always come away from those weekends with a deeper appreciation for the resilience and courage of the special needs children and families we meet.” “There are a lot of great organizations and phenomenal people that Annalee introduces us to, but it I wanted to talk about Barren Heights on this ride because it is a unique, local, family-centered retreat that is right down the road.” says Jeff.
And the road is something Rose sees a lot of on the training rides he started in December. Rose's love of cycling began as a boy when he got his first odometer put on his bicycle. "I made my Mom take a picture of odometer and me every 100 miles." He has been an active cyclist for over 25 years including racing during his time at WKU in the late 80’s. He resurrected the WKU Cycling Club in 1987 and qualified for and raced in the National Road Race in 1990. Rose is also the founding president of the Bowling Green League of Bicyclists. Jeff says, "There is nothing like being out on my bike. It makes the world and everything in it seem better. Attempting to set a record on my bicycle is something I’ve had on my bucket list and I appreciate all the people that are helping me make the attempt.”
The Ultra Marathon Cycling Association (UMCA) is the organization that certifies state crossing records. The current record for the South to North solo crossing is 12 hours and 22 minutes. Starting in Static, KY on the Tennessee border and finishing in Cincinnati at the Ohio border, the course runs 210 miles and has approximately 16,000 feet of climbing. Rose hopes to finish the course in under 12 hours.
The solo category pits the rider against the clock. Once the rider begins the clock will continue to run until the finish line is crossed. The rider must have a follow vehicle that alerts motorists on the road about the bicyclist ahead. The support personnel in the follow vehicle can provide technical support such as food, drink or spare wheels, but they can not assist with pacing or drafting for the rider. The follow vehicle also contains an official whose job is to ensure that the rider is safe and that all traffic laws are followed. Rose says, “basically the official has to make sure that I don’t run any stop signs or red lights.” The first infraction is a 15 minute penalty and gets progressively worse for subsequent penalties up to being disqualified. “I plan on obeying all of the traffic laws because I don’t want any time penalties.”
Jeff Rose cycles across Kentucky for Barren Heights