Bikes are great. They really are. But there are a million things bigger in life, and that’s coming from a bike website. Team Troll sprung up in 2010 to give bikes an extra mission that goes way, way behind wheels and pedals. 

The Trolls started out as a bunch of guys and gals that enjoyed fishing, hiking and the great outdoors. They gained the nickname “Troll” while smelt fishing under the Mighty Mackinaw Bridge. They were serious about fun, and simply enjoyed the great out-of-doors. But when a member of the gang found out his father had Parkinson’s Disease, the group immediately had a new focus and goal.

Now, Team Troll is a 13 rider strong bike squad doing mountain and road races around the state to raise awareness for Parkinson’s research. Scott Vanderstelt, the top banana organizing the squad, has found the Van Andel Institute and is working hard to raise money to fund Parkinson’s research. It is impossible not to get excited about biking and about this cause after talking with Scott, who is an enthusiastic and passionate person dedicated to making this world better.

The cycling community is famously supportive and Team Troll is excited to being attention to a disease that effect a million Americans yet remains a virtual mystery. There is no cure, no consistent treatment and even the cause is unclear. The irreversible death of neurons contributes to the loss of motor functions and body control over a period of slow degradation. Those suffering from PD deserve attention, focus and research to prevent and treat this disease, with a long-term goal of a universal cure.

At the massive Barry-Roubaix start line, the hip Team Troll kits stood out in their crisp, resilient orange and white. Scott and the team hope to see a lot more people in the kits to support the cause and bring more focus and attention to a very noble cause. The ultimate goal is to get some big names like Brian Matter or Jorden Wakeley (yes, you Jorden) into a pair of shorts for big races to get Team Troll on the Iceman podium (yes, still looking at you Jorden).

Check out Scott’s outstanding speech at the Pedal Driven fundraiser benefit talking about his story and his goals for this great organization.

You can donate to Team Troll by heading to their website, and stay up-to-date about events and joining the team. They also have a great Facebook  page as well as an active Twitter .