Evolution of Balance Award Winners 2009


I am happy to announce the winner of the 2009 Evolution of Balance Award!

Gracie Sorbello and Matt Burney (USA) head off in July for a self-supported ride along the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, which extends about 4400 km (2750 miles) from Banff, Alberta (Canada) to the Mexican border. The route is offroad for 95% of its length, crosses the Continental Divide at least 28 times, and includes over 60,000 m (200,000 feet) of elevation gain. The plan is to take about 3 - 3.5 months for the trip, starting early July’09 and hopefully finishing sometime mid-Fall. It’s a hugely ambitious trip, but if anyone can do it, they can, given Gracie’s distance riding experience on her coast-to-coast uni trip across the U.S. in 2006. Gracie is also receiving some sponsor support from Panama Jack, Keen Footwear, and Roll bikeshop, and like her trip across the U.S. is hoping to raise awareness and funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Click here for Gracie’s website. Originally it was going to be a solo trip for Gracie, but Matt has recently committed now to the ride as well.

Thanks to all of you who applied for the '09 award, including riders from the USA, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Canada, and Germany. Good luck on your trips!

Also, thanks a lot to the co-sponsors who help make this award possible. They include the Hoover Family, Unicycle.com, and Horny Toad Clothing. The award aims to help support the spirit of non-competitive, creative and adventurous muni trips and includes:
• $1700 (CAN)
• $500 (US) gift certificate for Horny Toad Activewear (www.hornytoad.com)
• One free KH unicycle (single speed)
• One free set of KH pads and gloves
• Up to three additional KH unicycles at wholesale cost


Congrats to the winners!

Gracie <… snip…> Footwear?!! :astonished: :slight_smile: :stuck_out_tongue:

Best of luck guys.

Congratulations Gracie and Matt! Their adventure will be epic, that’s for sure. I am envious of those who get to tackle massive challenges like this, but of course, they’re really in reach for many people; it is question of priorities and vision. Vision is what these two have, that’s for sure! Gracie has proven it already - and, although I don’t know him, a quick search on Matt showed up a number of pretty amazing exploits as well.

I am very happy to be part of this award and can’t wait to follow their big adventure this summer!

Everyone else, start planning for 2010.


Awesome… Congrats to the winners (Are they forum users? Which nicknames?)

This is a LONG adventure! I can’t wait to see some reports :smiley:

Have fun in there… and keep us updated!

Congratulations to Gracie and Matt. Good luck on your adventure !! :slight_smile:

Congratulations Gracie and Matt. Gracie is one of my all time heroes, and has been a huge inspiration to me, so I can’t think of anyone more deserving of this award.

Can’t wait to hear how it all went!


In a word: EPIC!

Good luck Gracie and Matt!

I’m so envious it’s killing me! :slight_smile: Like Nathan said, “Vison and Priorities.” I’ve got the vision for something truly epic yet it’s the priorities that I’m battling right now! I look forward to following Gracie and Matt’s adventure and hope to learn useful tips for when I embark on my own quest.

Wow… 2,750 miles in 3 - 3.5 months! What an incredible journey. Congrats Gracie and Matt. Can’t wait to hear more about it.


Congratulations and all the best!

wow, this sounds like fun!
Good luck.

Awesome! She mentioned her trip idea to me last year when she was visiting the area, and I told her all about the evolution of balance award and that she should apply. I’m glad she did! She is definitely an inspiration.

Congratulations and good luck to Gracie and Matt. Sounds like an incredible idea.

But, with 2750 miles over 3.5 months, you guys are looking at avg 23 miles/day offroad?!? With backpacks? That’s quite ambitious. Am I missing something in my calculations? Either way, wow, that’s huge.

Big congrats to Gracie and Matt!

The Great Divide route is mostly fire road; on big wheels, 23 miles a day should be totally doable. At least in terms of distance; the logistics of the trip could be pretty challenging.

I’ll be looking forward to hearing about it! I’ve thought about doing this trip myself, but there’s no way I could dedicate myself to it at this point.

Congrats guys! Can’t wait to read about your journey online.

Hopefully we can follow the journey on Gracie’s blog. I can’t wait too to read more about it.
Congrats and enjoy the ride!