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Senior cycles more than 100 kilometres to mark 80th birthday

By Alison Langley, Niagara Falls Review

Peterborough resident Don Bourne cycled 100 kilometres through Niagara on Thursday to mark his 80th birthday. Riding alongside him were his wife Becky Bourne and his grandson Andrew Yorke, a triathlete who represented Canada at the Rio Olympics. Mike DiBattista/Niagara Falls Review/Postmedia Network

Peterborough resident Don Bourne cycled 100 kilometres through Niagara on Thursday to mark his 80th birthday. Riding alongside him were his wife Becky Bourne and his grandson Andrew Yorke, a triathlete who represented Canada at the Rio Olympics. Mike DiBattista/Niagara Falls Review/Postmedia Network

Every year for the past 15 years, Don Bourne bikes his age in kilometres on his birthday.

This year, he decided to up the ante a little bit.

The Peterborough resident on Thursday marked his 80th birthday by cycling 100 kilometres through Niagara.

“By the time we get back to our hotel, we'll be pretty close to 100 kilometres,” he said during a brief stop along the Niagara Parkway in Chippawa. “If not, we'll keep riding up the street to get to 100.”

He was accompanied on the ride by his wife Becky Bourne and his grandson Andrew Yorke, a triathlete who represented Canada at the Summer Olympics in Rio last month.

“I thought this would be a great birthday gift for him, to come down and support him,” said 27-year-old Yorke, who lives in Guelph. “It's better than any gift I could buy him.”

Bourne said he doesn't feel that being an octogenarian should put a damper on his active lifestyle.

“I'm kind of obsessed,” he said with a smile. “We ride, we run, we play tennis.”

Just last weekend, the Bournes participated in the Canada Army Run and the Terry Fox Run in Ottawa.

Bourne actually celebrates his birthday on Saturday but decided to do his birthday bike ride a few days early because he plans to participate in the 10-kilometre Zoorun at the Toronto Zoo on the weekend.

He has challenged his five children and 12 grandchildren to run with him.

That is the only birthday present he wants.

 

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