Monday, 13 June 2016


DAY 7 Marla To Kulgera Roadhouse

Blog By: Melissa Speare and Mick Farrag

Stats For The Day
Distance: 181 km's
Average: 28.9 km/h
Max Speed: 42 km/h
Climbing: 340 metres
Riding time: 6hrs 16min
Temp Min: 4 degrees
Temp Max: 14 degrees
Wind: Light Tailwind all day from the South

"What do you need to grow? Love!"

Dedicated to Geoff Honey

With a late start of 7am today, riders and road crew began the day with a warm breaky served at the Marla Roadhouse.

As the sun rose this morning in Marla we took a quiet moment to remember our good friend and fellow Smiddy family member, Geoff Honey, who shared in many of our adventures from Sydney to Townsville. As we rolled out, those of us who have ridden with Geoff, remember and shared stories of the true gentleman who we were so lucky to get to know. We were fortunate to begin our Smiddy adventures with Geoff in 2012 and join with him again in 2014. Many others shared rides in 2013 and 2015. Those who had not shared adventures with Geoff, shared in our sadness of his passing, knowing how incredibly special all of our Smiddy family is.

While we may ride our bikes ridiculous distances, in stupid crazy conditions, none of this would happen without so many of our family and friends joining the Smiddy family, whether they realise it or not. We know that day after day of being battered on our bikes, we need to boost each other to get us all safely to our destination.

More than ever, we see that it is not just us riders that make up this magnificent family, but each of our families is indeed such a special part of this enormous Smiddy family, whether they realise it or not.

We may not have all met but we have a common bond and care for each other as they cheer us on day after day with messages of love, holding the fort at home and work, caring for children and taking on the full load of looking after home and other responsibilities.

The care and support we see and feel...the Smith family helping out mine to ensure my son gets to Uluru safely so I can hug him at the finish line. Thank you so much Smith family. It means the world to me..

...The love messages from work mates that fill inboxes and message banks that you hear coming through as we ride into mobile range...

...The care packages that riders open each morning with words of love and encouragement that are recalled and sometimes shared during the struggles and joys of our days on the road.

To our family...Its your magnificence and the love of you all that allows us to grow, take a risk and achieve our goals...thank you!

As for our day on the road...

Well it was pretty spectacular where the peloton seemed to roll effortlessly from beginning to end. 181km day - our shortest day yet saw the first toilet break scheduled for 45km bought forward to 15km. A little early for many, I know, but for me the timing could not have been more perfect. From here on the day seemed to whip by with morning tea upon us by 10.30 am.

From here our schedule changed to take our lunch break at the SA/NT border where happy snaps galore took place to commemorate the last 7 days journey from Adelaide. From lunch we mount our bikes with a new excitement and buzz amongst the group, particularly as Raymondo, Gytey and Diesel strive to take the crown of cadence king. Raymondo grabbed the jeweled adornment with gusto with an average cadence of 100 over the distance of the day. Makes me dizzy just thinking about it.

With the peleton working like clockwork all day long, we make great time as we hit our resting place for the night by 3.15.

An all time first smiddy huddle led by Peter Taylor in the driveway of the Kulgera roadhouse
The days pricilla award won by Mal Bourke for holding up the prime real estate of the ladies toilet.
Teamwork awards went to Deb Gillespie and Neil Sherrington.

Derek - our resident cycling poet has bought us to tears with his recollection of the days events. He has penned yet another spectacularly hilarious recollection of todays antics which we're sure you'll enjoy, however, I think we'll have to leave the publishing to another Smiddy blog, as we have expired our word count.

Mel and Mick.

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