The Cycle for SMILE team sets off two weeks from today and aims to cycle 16,000km in 80 days to raise awareness and funds for the SMILE Foundation. To donate: www.cycleforsmile.com.au/C4S_Donate.html
As if by plan, the weather cleared and it was a mild winter’s morning that greeted over 200 guests who had gathered for the launch of the 'Cycle For Smile' charity ride. This event has captured the imagination of not just cyclists across the nation but the end of town has come in to support this very worthy cause. 'Cycle For Smile' is a charity formed to raise funds to help supports kids with rare diseases.
Our very own Mike Humphries is one of the six riders taking part in this epic challenge; to ride a bicycle around Australia in 80 days. That's an average of 220km a day! It would be like riding the Tour de France three times back to back (albeit without the monster mountain climbs!). It’s enough to make even the most seasoned cyclist quake in his custom moulded cycling shoes.
Mary, Pamela, Colleen and Marlene from the Administration Office were there as well as some teaching staff and Old Boys to cheer staff member Mike on as well as a few current Knox boys. Tony Abbott, Leader of the Opposition, gave a great speech extolling the virtues of how Australians have a habit of “mucking in” and making things right; not waiting for governments to act but to take on a problem and find a solution. The group has already raised close to $1M and that’s before they even started.
Listening to Mr Abbott, I was struck by the hope this cause will provide to families, as a father nearby operated some medical contraption designed to sustain his baby boy. I gave thanks that it wasn’t me that was burdened with this terrible injustice and I gained a tiny insight into what it must be like to live with the constant shadow of a sick child and no cure in sight. Finally the time came to begin the journey and around 50 riders joined the team of six to lead them out of the city and onto the open road. The feeling in the group was one of extreme pride and excitement with lot’s of chat and many well-wishers waved and took photos as the group made their way north on the Pacific Highway.
It was with a tinge of sadness that we reached the designated end of the ride for the supporting riders, which was the Road Warrior Café at Mt White and we said our final goodbyes to six brave and gifted atheletes ready to take on the challenge of a lifetime. Keep watch on www.cycleforsmile.com.au
to see the progress of the team. Mike Israel, IT Manager