Monday, 30 September 2013


Distance: 176.9 kilometres
Average speed: 24.2 kmph
Maximum speed: 74 kmph
Temperature Minimum - 2 Degrees At the top of Mt Wellington
Temperature Maximum - 16
2894 Metres climbed:
Ride time: 6:53:26
Wind direction: Tail

Blog written by Paul "Maso" Mason

"Ecclesiastes 3-11; There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the sun:
* The time to tear down and a time to build
*A time to weep and a time to laugh
* A time to mourn and a time to dance
*A time to cut and a time to mend
And there is nothing better than a person to enjoy their work for who am I to tell them what will happen after them.

Why this quote? this is Smiddy you ride around Tasmania and for the first three days there wasn't much sun. We are all here - we have all shed tears, we have all wept for friends and family that are no longer with us. Riding for Smiddy allows us to cut, to mend, to build, to laugh and the dance (especially Marto when he climbs a hill). Our road crew feed us, mend us, build us up ready for the next day. Adam rides with us every day. We know this and we also know that all of the other people we ride for do as well.

We awake at 4.30am with snowflakes floating in the air like a fairytale ... Just like our little cottages that Jess so wonderfully organised for us at Tarraleah. But we are not in a fairytale. Because before we are finished our amazing hot breakfast, before we are actually ready Kevvy blows his bloody whistle and our five minutes to begin Day 4 Tarraleah to Hobart.

We roll out and surprise surprise, we climb and we climb again and then begins our best day in Tasmania. we are on a descent with a tailwind woo hooo!!! We fly - speeds up to 70km recorded. the pack spread out across the road just the way Kevvy likes it.

Before we know it is a Hamilton. Tim, Jock and Jane from Curringa Farm were our awesome hosts and we were speechless as we were spoilt with homemade scones and cakes. This connection was arranged by one of Paul Mason's work colleagues - Richard Focken. Thanks so much Richard and the crew at Curringa Farm. All the riders enjoyed the informative presentation by Tim. There is an unwritten competition currently occurring and Marto is currently holding the yellow jersey for sausage roll consumption. Flynny currently is in green (sprint jersey) for the number of scones and claims he ate four but eye witnesses have verified he may have actually eaten 16. This was Jess' highlight of the trip to date as she snatched a suckling lamb from the mothers teat and consoled it by giving it a huge cuddle before returning it to its mother.

Heading into New Norfolk Rowan decided it was time to play and he started a fantastic 5-10km smashfest whereby Watty and several other were redlining just to hold on. Much fun was had and riders were known to experience a little bit of scone throat vomit as they raced with great speed toward Hobart.

Lunch was fantastic hosted by Meg Walker and her mum Marsha at their beautiful establishment with their amazing friends and family. Kate was extremely overwhelmed by their generosity as they also gave several donations and opened their homie to us. they are a part of our Smiddy family and have offered to host in any future events that are held. thanks so much to Meg and her support crew at New Norfolk.

Tim was kind enough to lead us into Hobart with our day rider Oliver who has previously ridden with Sharky on his original journey when he first started riding. We had a pit stop at Salamanca and then a quiet hush fell over the group as we munched once again on the delicious home baked cooking so kindly provided to us. Strategies were formed, alliances made, tactics discussed and Row was at his all time best in attempting to impact everyone with his Dynamo powers. Why was this happening??? We were about the embark on one of the greatest mountain climbs in Australia and in our lives. Mount Wellington. The tour of Tassie conducted their stage one time trial minutes before we arrived, you could smell the sweat and blood at the start line. Some sucked it up with glee - we could all see the twinkle in Sambo's eyes. Some were weeping in anticipation at the next challenge the Tasmania would throw at them. The NRS Genesis completed the climb in 46 minutes. Our own Row man knocked it over in 40 minutes (give or take 5 or so kilometres) due to the Dynamo powers mentioned earlier. Sambo well he knew that he wanted it and managed to out-sprint the three amigos hot on his tail (Kate, Tim and Maso). Everybody who started finished the climb and what an awesome effort!!! After three days of majestic Tasmanian climbing - doing Mt Wellington on tired legs was tough and its really important that all the Garmins, the Strava, the heart rate monitors, the power meters - they all need to take second place to the legs, the heart but most importantly the mind that gets you to the top. You are not going to remember the figures when you retell this story. You will remember what grit, what guts, what mental strength, what friendships were formed and how slowly those kilometre markers rolled under your wheels. Reflect on this and be really proud of what you have achieved. Be just as proud and remember - how good showering and actually surviving the cold of the descent was because that is what life is all about. The small things. A little bit of discomfort is nothing in comparison to what people suffering with cancer are going through.

We finished the day with a magnificent meal at SOLO - where Simon our host spoilt us rotten. thanks so much Tim for your contact with him and providing us with a great night.
We also bade farewell to Boydy and Geeves - both who were to leave us in the morning. Thanks so much to both of you - you are with us in spirit to the end.

Congratulations to Rupert for his spirit award in allowing Row to win the climb and assisting riders up the climb.

This is Sharky's 7 in 7 Smiddy Tasmania Day Four. An epic ride so far. I'm loving every minute and cant wait to keep going.



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