Tour-2014-Banner-5.jpg
2018
FAQ

Ride FAQs

Please note: Our FAQ is currently being updated for the ride.

  1. What is the Tour's purpose?
  2. Is the Tour a good choice for new riders?
  3. How difficult is the route?
  4. Do I have to finish riding each day by a specific time?
  5. What happens if I can't finish the day's ride?
  6. This is the first time I've done the Tour. What support do you have for first-time riders?
  7. What do I need to bring?
  8. What kinds of bikes will be provided?
  9. What handle bars do you recommend for Tour DaVita?
  10. Can I ship or bring my own my bike?
  11. What should I wear on the Tour?
  12. What is included in my registration fee?
  13. What are the exact dates and times to arrive and depart?
  14. What can I expect my sleeping arrangements to be like?
  15. What do I do with my luggage, change of clothes, etc.?
  16. What are the camping facilities like along the way?
  17. How are the routes selected?
  18. Will there be beer and wine available in the evenings?
  19. What if I have a food restriction and need to make a special meal request?
  20. Is there a minimum age limit for Tour riders?
  21. Will I have phone/e-mail access during the ride? Will there be a way for me to charge electronic devices?
  22. Will there be someone who can help me put my bike together?
  23. Can a non-DaVita teammate sign up for the ride with me?
  24. What happens if I have to cancel my registration?
  25. Can I give any extra money that I raise to another teammate?
  26. What if I can't raise enough money by the start of the ride?
  27. Do you encounter much traffic on the route?
  28. Can I drive to and leave a vehicle at the airport?
  29. Can I drive to and leave a vehicle at the first campsite?
  30. If I fly into another airport, how can I get to the start of the Tour?
  31. Can a family member stay onsite with me if not registered to ride?

 

 

What is the Tour's purpose?
This 200-mile bicycle ride is a celebration of you, your teammates and all of the work that you do every day - all while raising funds for kidney disease awareness and prevention programs.


Is the Tour a good choice for new riders?
One of the perceptions of Tour DaVita is that it's the same group of people getting together for their annual ride. Actually, that's not true. We consistently have lots of new riders; in recent years, nearly 40 percent of our riders have been first-timers, while nearly two-thirds had ridden Tour DaVita less than twice. We do cherish our repeat riders, and we also LOVE seeing new faces each year! So if you haven't tasted the singular experience of Tour DaVita, come join us.


How difficult is the route?
While the elevation profiles for some daily routes may look intimidating, it's possible for almost any rider in good cycling shape to finish each day.  You should be able to ride at least 45 miles to get you to lunch each day. From lunch, there will be a shuttle to get you to the next campground.  The total mileage for each day is between 50 - 100 miles. Please see the Route section for more information.


Do I have to finish riding each day by a specific time?
We ask that all riders be off of the road and in camp by sundown. This is to ensure all riders safety, and our Support Vans will be required to pick you up if it is too dark out.


What happens if I can't finish the day's ride?
There are Support Vans on the route each day. They're available to transport cyclists as needed due to mechanical problems or medical injuries, and will be also be available at rest and lunch stops throughout the week. The vans also have extra water and snacks, if needed. If at any time you need assistance, please signal a Support Van with a fist straight out, and we will stop for you. If you do get into a Support Van, you might not be transported directly to camp; the vans usually wait until they are full to go to camp.


This is the first time I've done the Tour. What support do you have for first-time riders?
The Tour site includes a list of what to pack, training tips, and this full list of FAQs to answer all of your questions. If you don't see your question listed here, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will get right back to you!


What do I need to bring?
Of course, this depends on your style of traveling, but we have several resources for you to tap into. We've compiled a list of what to pack.


What kinds of bikes will be provided?
Backroads will provide their custom-designed titanium bike. Each new model passes through many expert hands. Backroads' Founder & President Tom Hale gives each model several rigorous test rides before that model of bike is used on Backroads trips. Our mechanics tune your designated bike before you meet your bike at the start of the Tour. And on the first day of the Tour, Backroads leaders will make sure it's ideally adjusted and fitted to you. For more information on the Backroads bike: click here for bike sizing information or click here for bike specificiations..


What handle bars do you recommend for Tour DaVita?
While handle bar types are certainly a personal preference, the best answer is to select the bars you are most comfortable riding. What you currently ride the most at home will probably provide you the most comfort and ease of use. Know that "Drop", or racing-style, handlebars do not turn you into a faster rider! If you have not put in a lot of miles with a type of handle bar, the Tour is probably not a good place to find out if you like them (or not!). Select what you are comfortable with and enjoy!


Can I ship my bike?
Absolutely. See the Bike Shipping section for details!


What should I wear on the Tour?
What you wear on the Tour can have an impact on your overall happiness. Visit our What to Wear on a Bike Ride page for tips on how to be most comfortable on your bike, as well as some useful links to get you prepared


What is included in my registration fee?
Your registration fee and fundraising contribution includes lunch and dinner on arrival day, three meals per day for the three days of riding, and breakfast on our departure day.  It also includes ample beverages (both adult and non-adult) and snacks during each day's ride, baggage transport for one bag, full course support that includes a signed and marked route, Support Vans, mechanical and medical assistance if needed, and all overnight accommodations (including tent, sleeping bag and pad).  Each of our overnight sites include showers, restrooms, a beer tent and bike mechanics - all staffed by your Tour DaVita Leader Team!


What are the exact dates and times to arrive and depart?
See our Ride Details section for information.


What can I expect my sleeping arrangements to be like?
The Backroads Crew will set up Backroads’ tents at each campground (2 people per tent). You will be provided with a thermarest (a thin, inflatable camping sleep pad), a sleeping bag and a sleep sheet. If you are bringing your own sleeping bag, thermarests or tent, please be sure to update your rider registration.


What do I do with my luggage, change of clothes, etc.?
Your bags will be transported to each night's campground and placed inside your tent. You will not have access to your bags during the day, so you may want to bring a small backpack (or Camelbak-type bag and bladder) to carry extra gear during the day. You will also be provided a trunk bag if you are using one of our bikes, and you can fit a small amount of stuff in it as well!


What are the camping facilities like along the way?
The Tour Team spends a great deal of time selecting the best accommodations for our stay each night. Every overnight stop promises to have good tent locations, a food tent, mobile showers, plenty of portable restrooms and plenty of staff to ensure that every night is a memorable one! 


How are the routes selected?
Much like the overnight accommodations, we take incredible care and pride in selecting the safest, most interesting routes that we can. Our routes are fully supported by our Support Teams and riders, so all you have to do is enjoy the ride!


Will there be beer and wine available in the evenings?
There will be a beer tent set up each evening with beer and wine.


What if I have a food restriction and need to make a special meal request?
Please note this food restriction in your registration information prior to the ride, and let us know exactly what it is. Then, on your first day in camp, please head to the kitchen to introduce yourself to the person who will be coordinating food restrictions. We will have a separate table set up each night for these meals.


Is there an minimum age limit for Tour riders?
The minimum age for a Tour rider is 21.


Will I have phone/e-mail access during the ride? Will there be a way for me to charge electronic devices?
Due to the fact that the point of the ride is to explore rural areas, you should expect to have interrupted cell phone and/or Internet access. But often we ride through areas or stay in towns that do have service. Recharging is available - but not guaranteed - through the Service Excellence tent.


Will there be someone who can help me put my bike together?
We will have bike mechanics on hand to assist anyone who needs a hand assembling their bikes. Since we have so many riders out there, we do ask that you do come familiar with how to assemble your own bike in case they can't get to you before the ride starts.


Can a non-DaVita teammate sign up for the ride with me?
Because there is a limited number of riders we can accommodate on Tour DaVita, we have limited registration to DaVita teammates (employees) and their immediate family member(s), which includes spouse/partner, adult children age 21 or over, siblings, and parents. Village Service Partners (VSPs) sponsoring the event and nephrologists who are credentialed physicians in DaVita facilities may also ride. All riders must be 21 or over. For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


What happens if I have to cancel my registration?
If you cancel your registration, you unfortunately forfeit your registration fee and any funds collected by the beneficiary stays with the beneficiary. Also, credit for funds raised cannot be transferred to another rider.


Can I give any extra money that I raise to another teammate?
Unfortunately, no. We encourage riders to raise as much as you can. Credit for funds raised cannot be transferred between riders once they have been received by the beneficiary.


What if I can't raise enough money by the start of the ride?
Riders must raise the fundraising minimum before they can be officially registered. We will post some fundraising ideas in the spring to assist you. If you do not think you will be able to meet the minimum, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so that we can help you.


Do you encounter much traffic on the route?
As always, your Tour Team strives to create the best, most memorable route each year. This year will see a mix of quiet country roads and urban centers. Traffic will vary depending on location and time of day, which is why we always ask that you ride single-file to minimize your profile on roadways. 


Can I drive to and leave a vehicle at the airport?

Details and instructions coming soon... Yes. All riders must take the shuttle from the airport to camp. You are responsible for parking fees; this expense is not eligible for reimbursement. After parking, proceed to the baggage claim area of the airport's Central Terminal and locate a DaVita Red Shirt..


Can I drive to and leave a vehicle at the first campsite?

No, our transportation is only contracted to and from the airport and there is limited parking at each campsite. Furthermore, if you drive your car to the first campground, there will not be transportation provided back to this site at the end of the Tour and you will not be able to leave your vehicle here after we depart..


If I fly into another airport, how can I get to the start of the Tour?

If you fly into an airport other than Richmond International Airport (RIC), you are responsible for transportation from that airport to RIC and back at the end of the ride. You should plan to arrive at RIC no later than 9 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22. Be sure to allow plenty of travel time from RIC to your alternate airport for your flight home on Wednesday, Sept. 26. Please note that there is no personal car parking at the first night's campground (See the FAQs above).


Can a family member stay onsite with me if not registered to ride?

We encourage family members to come cheer you across the finish line. However, only registered riders are allowed to stay onsite.
 
 
 
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