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This is actually a bicycle ride but a group of 10 motorcyclists (calling ourselves the Moto Safety Team) were on hand to act as marshals and support during this, the third annual charity ride. So far the rides have raised $9.9.m for research purposes.

It started at 6am on Saturday at St Lucia campus of UQ (where we gathered an hour beforehand to be served breakfast and complete our briefing).  We rode out past the cyclists and stopped at various points along the route, either to cheer them as they cycled past or to offer assistance if required.

As the last cyclists passed then we would ride past the front of the group and stop again at various points. Throughout the course of the day I assisted with two punctures, one chain and triggering pedestrian lights at an intersection to help the cyclists to cross.

The route took us through Oxley, Camira and along the Centenary Highway to Ipswich. The route crossed the Warrego Highway and along Pine Mountain Road ontothe Brisbane Valley Highway, through Fernvale and we camped at Logan’s Point campsite behind Wivenhoe. There were several pit stops with water, food, sunscreen, repair facilities, port-a-dunnies etc. on the way. The length of the route was 110 km.

The campsite was a small canvas town with tents for massage, technical assistance, medical assistance (mostly blisters), coffee, ablution blocks and a big marquee that served as the mess hall.  The food served in bulk was adequate, and we each received a complimentary beer, but highlight of the evening was a big-screen viewing of the Bledisloe Cup rugby match.  We all agreed that the organisers had basically though of everything.  We each got our own tent and after a hot shower we could turn in for a good night’s sleep (in our own sleeping bags).

Next morning the dawn greeted us with a thickfog.  Visibility was down to 50m (on the dam causeway).  The police, who were our official escorts, could not permit a start. Eventually the fog lifted and we got away.  The ride back was a mirror image to the rideout and everybody was back safe at UQ by 5 pm. We all felt very satisfied for a good weekend’s work.

Ken Robilliard

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