Posted by Ian Ballantine on Jun 03, 2020
Ride for Medical Research Team Raises $53,000 for ARH Research
Rotary District 9810’s Ride for Medical Research team have raised $53,000 for Australian Rotary Health research recently during their ‘Silos, Plains, Lakes & Art Tour.’
Early on the Sunday morning of the 15th of March, just before social distancing rules kicked in, the team met at the Bayswater football oval for a send-off by 9810 District Governor Shia Smart. By 7am the riding team (also joined by eighteen members of the Warburton Ghost Riders) were on the road towards Halls Gap, stopping at Willaura for lunch, with an overall goal to reach Lake Bolac at the end of five days.
 
Ride for Medical Research Ride Coordinator David Brown said there was an opportunity along the way to visit and support some country towns doing it tough. “Our lunch stop was at a small bakery which opened – it is closed on Sundays. The baker opened especially for us,” David said. “Some locals came out to greet us and take photos, we had a tour of his bakery – the oven was first used in 1919 and is still used today. I had the best vanilla slice I have had for a while.” David said that visit set the tone of the ride for the rest of the week.
On day 1 of the ride, the team covered 89km on their bicycles, arriving in Halls Gap at around 3.30pm. For the next three nights they stayed in Horsham, driving out each morning and riding a loop along part of the painted Silo Trail in Western Victoria. “My wife Karen and I, like many others, had heard about the painted silos but it is not until you see them and read the story behind the artist and their work that you start to wonder how they managed to get the proportions right on such a high curved surface,” David said.
On day 2, the team travelled another 104km from Murtoa to Brim, visiting the Sheep Hills Silo on the way, which has an Indigenous theme.
After a 50km on day 3, the Lascelles Hotel opened their dining room for the riding team to have lunch, then they were on their way once more.
Another highlight of the trip was riding at Moyston oval on day 4, which claims to be the birth place of Aussie Rules football. That day they rode 126km in total.
Day five from Ararat to Ballarat led the team on 98km through the gold fields.
Finally, on day 6, they rode from Ballarat to Lake Daylesford, where they had lunch before driving back to Bayswater where the ride began.
“What a difference a week makes. Restrictions were being introduced and had we been a week later starting our ride it would not have happened,” David said. “I would like to thank all riders and support crew who took part and hope they look at joining us again next year if we can do it all again.”
David said 2021 brings some challenges, but they are now beginning to plan. “We are planning to ride north east Victoria based for the five nights in Wangaratta and rotating out from their visiting the historic towns, wineries, more painted silos, lake Mokoan and Ned Kelly’s last stand at Glenrowan,” he said. We are very thankful as always for the support of the Ride for Medical Research team, who add this donation to the $1.1 million dollars they have contributed over the past 34 years.
Some of this money will be put towards the Rob Henry Memorial PhD Scholarship and the rest towards mental health research.
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