Saturday, 30 August 2014

2014 Bottlemart Smiddy Challenge - Day 1 - Brisbane to Nanango

Day 1 Brisbane to Nanango

Today’s Blog is brought to you from the boys from the Burdekin. Ingham is now a part of the Burdekin.
Stats of the Day by Dave ‘Stinky’ Colahan with the assistance of Dr Phil
Elapsed Time: 11 hours 45 minutes
Moving Time: 8 hours 48 minutes
Average Speed: 23.6km p/h
Total Distance: 205.1km
Vertical Gain: 3,399 metres climbed
Minimum temperature: 12 degrees
Maximum Temperature: 25.8 Degrees

Road Kill Count by Jarrod Covey and Megan Wallace
1 Kookaburra
4 Skippy’s
1 Toad
1 Wombat (furry animal – had to be a wombat)
7 Bags of Bones
4 Unidentified Smells

Category Jerseys
Spirit Jersey awarded to Paul ‘Patty’ O’Regan who had the dubious honour of the first crash. But to his credit after a short stint in the Van with Kev he was back on his bike.

The Team Jersey went to Vanessa Trott and Jack Coward who put the Peloton first and voluntarily taking Van Time as to not slow the Peloton when they were having a bad day on the road.

The Mateship Award went to Tracy Keogh who made lots of friends throughout day with a number of different gentle hands on the back.

Guest Speakers
Tonight Jarred Cover and Robert Baumer stepped forward to offer the inspiration for completing the challenge. Jarred spoke of the loss of muched loved co-worker who showed steely determining in not letting cancer beat her despite being gravely ill with cancer at the time of her passing it was it was a heart attack which took her. Robert spoke of how he lost his best friend to leukaemia at the age of 26, his best friend was an elite athlete which showed that this disease doesn’t discriminate.
Day 1 of the 2014 Bottlemart Smiling for Smiddy Challenge began with a great Breakfast at the UQ Aquatic Centre. The breakfast was provided by a great group of volunteers and all the riders were grateful to be leaving Brisbane with a full stomach. We were joined at the start line by many friend and family, we were once again privileged to have David and Maria Smiddy make their way from across the Tasman to join us on our journey. Looking around there were many eager and nervous faces, some familiar and some new to the Smiddy Family. One thing in common with all whether it’s your first or your fourth Smiddy Challenge the apprehension of week ahead was apparent.

Once Breakfast had been taken care of, Matty Marshall took centre stage to address the Smiddy Peloton and all at the UQ Aquatic Centre. His first role was to introduce Mater Foundation Nigel Harris who gave a brief address outlining the main goals and objectives of the Mater Foundation and how Smiddy is playing a crucial role in the foundations development. We were then honoured to hear from Marty Hegarty, father of Declan Hegarty, who passed last year as a result of cancer which has since led to the establishment of Project Declan. Marty gave an emotional address which further brought to how attention why we take part in the Smiddy Challenge. Marty was joined by his daughter Hollie who had held fundraising campaigns at their respected school and rugby league club with funds being donated to Smiling for Smiddy and Project Declan. Matty Marshall gratefully accepted a cheque of $5,000 from Marty for the funds raised by his children. Matty Marshall then closed the formality’s and it was time for a quick rider brief and team photo before hitting the tarmac.

Day 1 Brisbane – Nanango (205km) is renowned as a day for the mountain goats and after a swift exit through the Brisbane streets with the aid of Queensland Police Force the peloton would like to take this opportunity to thank the police escorts who saw us safely on our journey. Before too long we were greeted by our first climb of the day Mt Mee. This is a chance to see who is strong and today saw Adrian Cross & Mellissa Ooestenbroek take the King & Queen of the mountain (for bragging rights only - still another 1540 kms to go guys).

Just before morning tea the peloton was introduced to a new skill the ‘Shewees’. At the top of Mt Mee the road crew had prepared the usual feast for morning tea. Thanks Guys we couldn’t do this ride without you. After morning tea it was time to tackle Sharky’s short cut which is notorious for its slight ‘Pinch’ and mishaps at the water crossing. Despite it being an annual tradition for someone to take a swim the peloton proved history making it by all dry.

Kilcoy was the Destination for Lunch with egg and lettuce wraps being the main course with a cold can of coke, lollies and fruit also being on the menu. After Lunch we rolled on into Single File which was quickly disrupted as Patty performed a majestic swan dive, thankfully his pride was the worst thing inured. We then rolled on in single file to the Blackbutt Range, I’m sure this range wasn’t as long last year. The Peloton showed great determination in conquering the range before rolling into Blackbutt for a short afternoon Tea as the hours of daylight were dwindling away.

We quickly rolled out on way to our final destination for the day Nanango. With a few more rolling hills on the way a quick regroup was required with 15km were Sharky offered up his Finest Barrister skills providing Cappuccino gels to those who were suffering a little. I don’t know what was in those Gels but the Peloton polished off the final 15km in record time, admittedly a downhill run into Nanango but after such a long day it was evident the Smiddy spirit was starting to flow through the peloton.

As we rolled into the Nanango showgrounds the peloton was greeted for the 9th in a row by our generous hosts Mark and Deserli who have been proud supporters of Smiddy since Sharkys journey in 2006, Thanks again Mark and Deserli it is support like this that makes what we do possible. The Nanango Showground was our home for the night and were supplied with a great meal by the local Showground Committee and we thank you as well as we can’t continue without the all important fuel you provide us. Again I’d like to thank the Road Crew and Supporters for what they do to make our Journey a little bit easier ‘YOU’RE AWESOME’.

That sums up day one of the Smiddy Challenge 2014 my extremely soft swag and air-conditioned venue, I’m sure a little cold won’t stop 50 tired head and bodies from sleeping quiet soundly. However my Snoring may.

Thanks Ian and Jayden

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