After missing in action for two years during the Covid era, the Mike Nosco Memorial Ride came roaring back to life on November 3 has another reminder of what a positive impact a community of cyclists can have on the world.  Much as been spoken about a local cyclist by the name of Jack Nosco. It was his brother Mike who was killed in a crash that eventually set the MNMR in motion.

In the years since, and with an army of dedicated volunteers helping out, the annual ride has raised hundred’s of thousands of dollars to help a wide variety of recipients in need of some assistance as they deal with ill health. And unfortunately, there have been many – like  Tate MacDowell – who have not survived. It is in their memory and struggle that the Nosco ride continues to attract so many devoted fans.

Unlike every other massive group ride, what makes the Nosco ride special  beyond it’s stated aims to provide aid, is that it is free of charge.  What other group ride is there that offers a marked ride with sag stops, neutral support and sumptuous post-ride feast for nothing more than a signed release?! Welcome to the Mike Nosco Memorial Ride – where passion and care for others is the rule of the day.


This is Jack Nosco…there are not enough words to describe how much good he has done for the world…oh yeah, after retiring from a decade’s long stint as a fireman, he’s now ridden his bike for 685 consecutive days. Yes, Jack likes to ride his bike.


Having served two tour of duties in Iraq, the Nosco ride was proud to have local color guard present the flag for the singing of the Star-Spangled Banner.


Each year the assembled riders are treated to a solemn, reflective moment courtesy of this piper who kicks-off the day’s festivities.


Each year it is the legion of volunteers who turn out in the morning cold to ensure that the riders get signed-up…for free.


As a sign of the mutual respect and admiration that the community has for Jack and all that he has done, the local firefighters come out each year to lend their support and encouragement for the riders.


Just a few miles into the ride comes the spine tingling Portrero descent. It is steep and curvy and acts as the ride’s first wake-up call.


There are three routes available to choose from, and each offer up that which the Nosco ride is (in)famous for – wicked climbs! The scenery afforded by the beautiful Santa Monica mountains helps take away some of the pain…but not all.


Given that the ride has a big SoCal following, there of course is no shortage of fancy, hyper-expensive modern bikes. Luckily, a few proud souls show-up with some specialty bikes like the beautiful 1991 aluminum lugged carbon Cadex.


Due to the steep grades, not many people would dare attempt the ride on a tandem, let alone one without disc brakes! Then again, for SoCal cycling legend Dave Lettieri and his stoker, it was no issue. Dave ‘s history as a racer looms large and he was out celebrating the 25th anniversary of his Fastrack bike shop in Santa Barbara.


As always , RBA’s own Troy Templin was out to have fun.


There was no shortage of riders showing up in any one of the many memorial jerseys that mark each of the annual rides.


Former National Champ, Tour de France rider, and all around nice guy, David Zabriske (l), is local to the mountain roads and comes out each year to support the Nosco ride.


Thankfully, Mike Wilson  and his Elite Racing Service was there to provide neutral support.


We spotted this guy and his beautiful steel LandShark from a distance and up close noted the Hunt wheels with rainbow spokes.


RBA test rider John Perry drove from Colorado along with the same Alchemy Lycos AU project bike that he raced at the Big Sugar Gravel race in Arkansas just a few weeks prior. We weren’t sure how the gravel bike with  a 1x drivetrain and 42mm WTB tires mounted on Lun wheels would handle the 80 miles of pavement, but JP finished in his best time ever at just over six hours.


Another great feature of the ride was seeing the Media Motos TV crew with veteran race photographer Brian Hodes from VeloImages shooting from the passenger seat.


Now here’s a tandem that makes sense! In addition to the disc brakes, this sweet Calfee tandem was using a rear hub motor for added assist up the climbs.


Last, but not least, there was this guy with his beautiful Colnago to remind just how bitchen bicycles are!

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