A word from Sharky
The first day is always one of mixed emotions and this year was no exception. It’s wonderful that this great challenge, which each rider has been training hard for so long is finally underway, yet for many they are leaving behind family and friends for 8 days. While many riders do so in honour of loved one’s who have suffered from Cancer, I am one of the very lucky few who has so far been fortunate to not loose someone to this horrible disease, however that is the very reason I participate in this great event. I am from a large family, Mum, Dad, two brothers and two sisters, 3 nephews and 3 nieces. Then of course my own daughter, my wife and her family, including mum and dad, brother and 3 nieces and my extended family of Brother ‘s & sisters in law. It frightens me that my time may yet to come. In Australia 1 in 2 males and 1 in 3 females will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, so it is with this in mind I hope that we can find a cure or prevention before my time comes. I want to “Pay it forward”, in the hope that I never have to experience the loss others have.
From Dayboro the first real test of the challenge, Mt Mee, is upon us. A time for the strong legs to show themselves, a chance for an early chest beat, a time for the cagey old foxes of the peloton to suss out the competition for the later stages, but for most it’s a case of one pedal turn at a time, one of many more to come.
Out of Kilcoy is one of the toughest times, as we roll along the D’agular Hwy in mainly single file. It’s tough sitting behind the same rider not being able to talk away the kms. You are left to your own thoughts and that’s when it starts to hurt, the fatigue can set in. However I have got to commend the riders, we were starting to gel as a unit and starting to lock in the Smiddy pace. I was impressed with how quickly we are coming together which bodes well for the rest of the ride.
Tonight Nat Gordon, two time Smiddy Rider from 2011, gave us a moving account of why she decided to do Smiddy. Nat has lost an Aunty and good friend to Cancer. It is these things that inspire all of us to push our bodies beyond. It was hard not to have a tear in your eye listening to Nat’s story, but unfortunately one that is all too common.
Christian “Killer” Killeen