Crazy, Wild, Infectious Positivity: Dennis Caco

My husband, James, and I had just moved to sunny San Diego to spend a winter.  San Diego has always had my heart, for many reasons.  Of course, one of the biggest being that there was no winter, therefore, no off season for the cyclist.  For a cyclist from the part of Canada that we were from, this would be a dream come true.

It was Thanksgiving, and we were still newbies in town.  James was away for the weekend, thus, I was on my own.  I decided to show up for the Turkey Day ride known as the 5 faces of Soledad.  Mt. Soledad is a mountain in the heart of San Diego, well known to cyclists.  I have heard that there are 12 ways to summit, 5 of which would be covered the morning of Turkey Day.  We would be climbing about 1100 metres over a mere 40 km.

There I was, just a girl with a bike, surrounded by cyclists, none of which I knew.  I simply hung around quietly until it was time to climb.  Off we went.  As we started our first ascent, fellow riders chatted away.  I was on my own, and I focused on getting into a cycling flow.


It didn’t take long for Dennis to cheerfully say hello and start chatting with me.  Next thing I knew, Dennis and his fellow riding buddies were climbing along side me.  They were strong, fit, fast racers.  They were also considerate, open and always looking out for their fellow cyclist.

From the moment I met Dennis, his energy was infectious.  He is literally a ball of wild, crazy positivity.  It seeps out of his pores.  It infuses everyone around him.  He simply makes you believe that you can do whatever it is you are doing.

At the end of the five climbs, Dennis insisted that I join in for a group picture with him and his riding buddies.

From left to right: Me, Aron, Dennis, Wenzel

After the ride, Dennis invited me to join him and some other riders for a coastal ride the next morning.  I wondered why Dennis would want me to join his group?  They seemed out of my league.  But that is simply who Dennis is.  He believes in people.  He convinces them to believe in themselves.  He is a leader in the cycling community.  He brings people together to share their passion for cycling.

I eagerly agreed.  It turned out to be the right decision.  As I rode along the coast, breathing in the fresh sea air, it became very apparent that Dennis had formed a group full of motivated, positive riders.  Cyclists who constantly wanted to challenge themselves, but who were also there for each other.  These guys were all fit and fast, and they rode so professionally.  Safety and consideration were at the forefront of their riding priorities.

It turns out that Dennis had formed a riding group called Slowburn.  He was so inviting, and before I knew it, both James and myself were a regular part of their group rides.  A typical Slowburn ride may start out at a reasonable pace, but would always deliver at least one stretch of all out effort.  Despite how hard they pushed each other, no man (or woman) was ever left behind.  These guys were fast, fit racers.  Yet, they all made me feel welcome, and were always completely supportive and encouraging on every ride no matter how challenging.  They were infused with the Dennis positivity bug. 

I truly believe it may be impossible for Dennis to not be positive.  It seemed that no matter what happened, he was still smiling.  I recall a very windy ride up Mt. Laguna during which the side wind came along and picked Dennis and his bike right up.  Upon being dropped in the ditch, he simply picked up his bike, brushed himself off, and kept on going – with a smile on has face.

Along with his positivity and endless energy, Dennis also has an incredible work ethic.  I have single handedly witnessed his leadership within the cycling community.  He is constantly organizing rides, encouraging and supporting fellow cyclists, and sharing his passion for cycling.  He is quite an accomplished racer himself, yet he is very focused on cheering on his fellow racers.  He never misses an opportunity to share the achievement of a fellow Slowburner with the rest of the group.  During our time in San Diego, he was continuously pushing his own limits, and constantly working hard to challenge himself.

Enter a caption

After leaving San Diego, we stayed in touch with Dennis.  Once you meet him, you simply do not want to lose touch with him.  Dennis has continued to push and challenge himself.  His passion for his family is at the forefront of his life.  His wife is often sharing what an amazing husband he is.  He seems to always be supporting her in everything that she does.  He is now also a very excited and proud father.  To top all this off, he has pushed his limits as an entrepreneur and is constantly helping others to succeed in their start ups.  He sees great ideas, and he connects and motivates people to make them happen.

All of this, and he still stays committed to the Slowburn group, and the cycling community.  Anyone who has ridden with Dennis can’t wait to ride with him again!

During a visit to San Diego, Dennis organized a Slowburn ride for James and I.  It was fabulous!!! He introduced us to some new members, and we all rode in true Slowburn style.  It felt like home to be surrounded by such professional, courteous, positive riders.  Dennis’ attitude permeated throughout the group, just as it had the first time we rode with them.  I remember asking Dennis how he stayed so positive all the time.  He told me he surrounded himself with positive people!

Despite everything he does, he never stops putting his positive vibe out in to the universe.



{Source of racing pictures: Kawika Ohumukini}.


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