Vesta Shredding Day, HHS Parking Lot, 4/21, 9-Noon

Holliston's PMC 2017 Wrap Up

by Press Release
August 23, 2017

Holliston resident Bud Dodge is a 26 time participant in the Pan Mass Challenge, the annual cycling event which benefits the Jimmy Fund of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Here is Dodge's recap of the 2017 PMC which was held on August 5th & 6th.

Holliston riders - from left to right, the riders in the picture are Matt Clancy, TJ Jones, Bud Dodge, Sam Gillespie and Paul Gillespie.

Other Holliston riders included Darryl Abbey, Mike Cote, Molly Curry, Joanne O'Connell, Kevin O'Connell, Dianne Runstadler, Bill Snapper and Dan Serpico.

A season of strong training, combined with comfortably cool weather on Saturday and Sunday, was leading to one of my least taxing PMC weekends in many years. That was until I made a left hand turn off of sheltered back roads and onto the exposed Route 6 in Truro. There, 10 miles from the finish of PMC 2017, I hit the always present Cape Cod sea breeze. But this time around, there was nothing “breezy” about the significant headwind which almost brought us to a halt. While I can’t quantify the headwind, I can tell you that the PMC banners along the side of the road were blowing straight out in the opposite direction than I would have preferred, and our 18 -20 mph speeds suddenly dropped to 10 -12 mph.

30 years of cycling experience told me that the solution to this challenge is to quickly tuck in behind a strong group of riders. That group arrived shortly, and I shamelessly allowed them to endure the headwind, while I enjoyed the benefit of their slipstream. The group was led by one particular HUGE and incredibly fit rider who was so strong that the headwind seemed to have little impact upon him. “Man Mountain Biker Guy” and his pace line were my much needed ticket to the finish line.

In a purely metaphorical sense, you might say that being diagnosed with cancer is similar to my PMC 2017 headwind experience. One can go through life on top of the world, just like I did for 182 of the 192 miles. Then, out of the blue they hear the jarring words, “You have cancer”. When that terrible “headwind” enters someone’s life, they too look for solutions. But instead of other cyclists, it’s the doctors and researchers who are part of the “Pace Line of Cure”, guiding cancer patients through their personal “headwind”.

There’s another vital element to that “Pace Line of Cure”. Your contributions to the PMC provide the staff at the Dana Farber with the necessary resources to cure cancer. Without your financial backing, that magic doesn’t happen.

So please imagine the following … YOU are the HUGE and incredibly fit cyclist riding your bike into the teeth of that metaphorical headwind … When YOU look over your shoulder you see the “Pace Line of Cure” following in your slipstream …  Along with the medical professionals from the Dana Farber, the “Pace Line of Cure” includes cancer patients and their families … and it’s YOU and your generous PMC contributions leading these folks through their “headwind” and all the way to the finish line … which of course in this case, is a cure for their cancer!

If you would like to support Bud, or any of the other Holliston PMC riders listed below, please go to and search by rider name.


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