It is with a mixed measure of relief and sadness that I report the completion of the Great Ocean Road charity ride for 2012. In total we rode almost 300kms, consumed almost 300 bananas and held up well over 300 cars. With 32 riders coming from around Australia including Perth, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, we bonded quickly as we puffed and sweated our way from Geelong to Warrnambool.
The ride began on a wet and cold and dark Sunday morning, the rain bucketing down as we rode from Geelong. Fortunately the rain died away after an hour or so and we felt no further rain for the duration of the ride. The sun came out, our shoes dried out, and we settled in for 3 days of cruising through the undulating hills and by the majestic coastline of the Great Ocean Road.
One rider suffered 6 flat tires himself! (Found out along the way later that a small piece of glass had embedded in the tyre, piercing each tube he inflated).
In total we raised over $66,000 towards our three charites: ADRA, Compassion and the Botswana Orphan Project. With the government matching donations to ADRA, this equated to over $100,000. A great effort. Matthew Siliga of ADRA has said that he will let us know exactly what our money has achieved, so I will forward this information on to you when I have received it.
There will also be a few more formal photos coming through as well. I have learnt many things through this experience. Here are a few:
- The smell of roadkill is much worse when you are struggling for air up a hill on a bicycle.
- The rider with the flashiest bike isn’t always the flashiest rider
- Likewise, don’t assume you can keep up with the dodgiest bike.
- Don’t underestimate the old blokes
- Riding for charity really unifies a team
- When you are cold and wet and darkness surrounds you, the sun will eventually come out
- It pays to ask… there are generous people who are willing to support a good cause
- Spending time with the Father-in-Law can be a great experience
- After a difficult climb, there is a tremendous down-hill run
- Home is never more comfortable, nor my wife more beautiful, nor my kids more treasured than when I am slogging it alone hundreds of miles away.
- Every hour in training is worth it
- As one person I can’t change the world, but I can change the world for one person.
Thankyou for your support. Through hard work and generosity we’ve made a positive impact in the lives of many. Randall (Roo)