Known as a passionate advocate for ALL kids—and it is fair to say that Jody is
incredibly enthusiastic about empowering kids and using bikes as “the tool.” She prides herself on connecting with families and the community in which she lives. You will most often find Jody on a bike–commuting, out on the gravel roads in the region, or on the amazing trails of Tucson. She enjoys competing in endurance gravel and mountain bike races and looks forward to mentoring our “junior” level (El Grupito and Manzo Elementary) youth who choose to race in the future or guiding those who want to embrace the bike as an awesome mode of transportation.
Jody has extensive program development experience, and a solid record of securing project funding, and looks forward to “leveling up” programs across Grupo. She is excited to bring her professional and personal experiences and combine those with my ability to enlist, engage, and mentor our amazing El Grupito team members to help grow our dynamic, youth-centered cycling program.
Born and raised in Mexico, City. I’ve been into sports all my life, started doing enduro, motocross, and mountain biking when I was 6 years old and did my first off-road race at 13 years old. I was highly competitive at a national level. Unfortunately, when I was 14 years old, I had an accident on my dirtbike and broke my back leaving me paralyzed from the chest down. I did not let the accident stop me from continuing my sports career or my academic career. After just one year of the accident, I took on off-road handcycling, and sooner than later I was back in the same trails where I used to ride my dirt bike. Being highly competitive, riding by myself and my family was not enough so I found myself wanting to try other sports where there were more people to compete against. I moved onto triathlons first and completed three of them at the age of 17. Shortly after I realized my strongest sport was the road handcycle, so I decided to fully dedicate my time on the road. When I was 18 I was recruited by the University of Arizona Handcycling Team and moved to Tucson to pursue the dream of completing college and racing internationally. Since I moved to Tucson in 2017 I had accomplished a vast amount of achievements such as riding my handcycle across America, many podiums at a national level, becoming 3x national champion in Mexico, and attending my first UCI World Cup representing Team Mexico. I do believe breaking my back made me a more perseverant individual which has helped me both in sports and life and through countless hours of training I have mastered how to be a disciplined athlete. I also think most teachings that I learned through cycling can be transferred into everyday life situations such as not giving up, working hard, enjoying the ride, and being in touch with nature! Being a cyclist is not only about going fast but is also about being in tune with your body, mind, friends, and learning how to be a better person all around!
Sam has been involved with El Grupo for nearly a decade. Starting as a rider in 2013, Sam stayed with the program all the way through high school, racing and even placing 4th overall in the NICA high school MTB league. After high school, Sam shifted from racer to full-time commuter, graduated from the University of Arizona with a Bachelors in Photography, Video, and Imagery, and now is starting a photo-based festival for Southern Arizona. Sam has returned to coach with Grupito and help push the next generation of riders to be safe on the street and to ‘Be Your Own Rider’!
David’s love of cycling has taken him on some pretty amazing bike rides. He completed the Lands End To John A Groats ride in the UK, an epic 1000 mile ride taking in Great Britain from its furthest two points. He has ridden some of the legendary climbs of the Pyrenees, traversing from the Atlantic… Read more »
Max is a student at the University of Arizona studying Biosystems Engineering. He was also a part of El Grupo for 4 years racing and building connections in the cycling community. He is the 2021 XC(Mountain Bike) State Champion and has experience working with kids through his time at Grupo. Max is excited to be… Read more »
Nikos was born in Tucson but spent five years living in Pennsylvania before moving back to Tucson where he attended high school and now college. Coming from a family of six with three sets of twins, Nikos has always focused on family and his connections with others. He believes in El Grupo as a way… Read more »
Deidra Bustos grew up commuting the streets of Tucson by bike. She was a volunteer coach at El Grupo from 2014 until 1018. Deidra became a Pima Bicycle Ambassador in 2015 and has taught traffic safety skills in multiple schools across Tucson. She has been a mountain biker for eight years and started bikepacking in… Read more »
The daughter of Brazilian immigrants, Juliana has lived in seven different states in the US and in Germany. She got into cycling after one move during high school when she enjoyed finding her way around her new town in New England. After moving to Colorado for college Juliana did some mountain biking and distance riding… Read more »
Sean grew up in New Jersey and found his way to Tucson in 2020. He has a background in organization management, event management, fundraising, and bicycle racing. During his non-profit career, Sean led teams in multiple markets to raise more than $30 million for various causes. Sean is excited to work with the El Grupo… Read more »