Northland resident Nicolas Binger has been riding in Pelotonia since 2011.
"I started because I lost my dad to brain cancer at the end of 2010," said Binger, 33.
Binger's father had battled the disease for 16 months. The urge to do something in the wake of his death was strong, and the means for that happened to be at hand, he said.
"The first thing was I had just gotten a bike a year and a half before that," Binger, a computer programmer, recalled. "It was the first time I had ridden a bike as an adult."
At the time, he was a consultant with Abbott. The pharmaceutical company had a Pelotonia team and Binger signed on to the peloton.
"As you go with something like this, obviously I have that direct motivation of my dad, but in talking to people and raising money, you hear a lot more stories," Binger said. "Everybody opens up about who they have that was affected by it."
After moving on from Abbott, Binger kept up his involvement in Pelotonia and now rides with Team Atrium. He plans to ride 180 miles from Columbus to Gambier and back to New Albany on Aug. 5 and 6.
He said he has been ramping up his efforts largely because he got to take a tour of the James Cancer Hospital and spoke with some of the doctors doing research funded by the charity bicycle tour.
"It was such a powerful thing," Binger said.
That experience motivated him to join the ranks of the High Rollers for the ride, he said.
"A High Roller is someone who tries a little harder, someone who, when given a goal, will blow right past it," according to the Pelotonia website. "It's not about the minimum with these guys. They are Pelotonia's highest-performing fundraisers. They are family, friends and neighbors. Most times, in some way, this disease has hurt them. And they are determined to do something about it, something big."
That something is to commit to raise a minimum of $5,000.
Binger is upping the ante on another front, vowing to ride at least 5,000 miles on his bike this year.
"It just seemed to make sense, that $5,000 and to ride 5,000 miles," he said.