Nov 16, 2012 9:06 AM by Samantha Ptashkin

Dynamic "El Tour" duo rides the unbeaten path in more ways than one

TUCSON- Bike rides are double the fun for Kasey and Erin Hopper.

"We get reactions all the time when we ride around the city," Erin says. "People are yelling at us from their cars a lot of times."

The Hoppers are riding their third Tour de Tucson this year, on a tandem bicycle. "A lot of people will pass us and say, ''oh twice the power!'" Kasey says.

The first year they rode, in 2007, they finished in 10 hours and 37 minutes. The second year, they shaved a little time off.

This year they'll be pedaling toward a faster finish and celebrating five years since they married at the El Tour finish line. "It was important to us after we worked the 109 miles together and made it through, that we put that into a marriage," Erin says.

A husband and wife duo riding the unbeaten path, in more ways than one. "She's my rock when we do this," Kasey says.

Kasey is legally blind.

"I have a hard time with facial recognition, seeing at night, contrast, things like that," Kasey says.

But his disability doesn't stand in their way. "He's probably the best stoker I could ask for," Erin says.

They ride about 100 miles every week. "Every day is a challenge, everyday is different, every ride is different," Kasey says.

The practice may or may not help them beat their time this year. But the Hoppers say that is not what is most important. "If you have a disability or even if you don't, find someone you trust, find family, friends and don't let time pass you by," Erin says.

"We ride not just to have a good time, but to show that disabilities shouldn't hold you back," Kasey says.


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