COSTA MESA — Cycling with a mustache doesn't make you ride any faster, but it does garner a lot of awesome looks.
And, with temperatures expected to be in the mid-40s, the extra facial protection may ward off frozen upper lips for a group of five Orange County natives pedaling 1,000 miles down the coast from Oregon to San Diego at the end of the month.
The ride, known as CANCure1000 and founded by Costa Mesan Christopher Reynolds, aims to raise $10,000 in its inaugural year for cancer research nonprofit Movember.
"The name itself is about changing the vocabulary surrounding cancer," Reynolds, 28, said of CANCure. "The word 'cancer' has such a stigma — like a death sentence — but cancer is not what it was 20 years ago."
One in two men and one in three women will get cancer in their lifetime, Reynolds said.
However, with new research and treatment options, the survival and recovery rate are much higher than it was a couple of decades ago.
Reynolds' father, Albert Forster, who is in remission after being diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2010, will be following the riders in a vehicle.
"It's amazing," Christopher Reynolds said of having his father along for the journey. "There's definitely no way that I would be able to back out halfway."
The trip begins Nov. 17 at the California-Oregon border and travels south down routes 1 and 101 to finish at Larsen Field, San Diego, Nov. 27.
The riders will cycle about 100 miles a day, undergo a 40,000-foot elevation change and burn through about 6,000 calories a day.
"It's about identifying with someone else," said rider Matt Blank, 24, of Costa Mesa. "I can't walk in their shoes, but it's suffering just a little bit what somebody who has cancer or knows someone who has cancer would suffer themselves."
Riders can register for the whole trip or just legs of it at cancure1000.org. The group is hoping to get as many riders as possible to join them at Dough Boy's doughnut shop, 4535 W. Coast Hwy., Newport Beach, Nov. 27 to ride a few miles with the group in the final stretch of their journey, Christopher Reynolds said.
"It is an opportunity to fight, an opportunity to embrace life and live consciously. You can do this," he said, emphasizing the "can." "One pedal at a time, one treatment at a time, one day at a time."