Cy­clists sweat for char­ity

Tablelands Advertiser - - NEWS - An­drea Falvo

ACHIEV­ING a bucket list goal, sup­port­ing fam­ily mem­bers or boost­ing lo­cal med­i­cal ser­vices has mo­ti­vated a team of Ma­reeba res­i­dents to pedal more than 300km from Cairns to Cook­town.

The team of about 10 rid­ers will saddle up to take part in the 11th an­nual Car­diac Chal­lenge on Septem­ber 16-18, which sup­ports the Far North Queensland Hospi­tal Foun­da­tion.

With a mix of new and re­turn­ing rid­ers, the team has been rig­or­ously train­ing be­fore the big ride tack­ling Cop­per­lode Dam bike ride and cy­cling along lo­cal roads and trails.

First-time par­tic­i­pant Kath Elms said she was mo­ti­vated to join this year’s event af­ter her hus­band and par­ents had ex­pe­ri­enced car­diac is­sues.

“I’ve had a fair few health is­sues over two years and it was a chal­lenge for me to be able to do it,” she said.

“I’m look­ing for­ward to it and it’s a very good group, very sup­port­ive and a lot of fun.

“It’s a good ex­am­ple for my kids too.”

Mary Nay­lor will tackle the ride for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive year in sup­port of her mother.

“Last year when I did the Car­diac Chal­lenge my mum went into car­diac surgery the day that I got home from Cook­town,” she said.

“It’s the travel that she’s still try­ing to get over ... so this is so im­por­tant, fundrais­ing to keep our pa­tients home, to keep them in Cairns.”

The team has raised about $4000, which will go to­wards the FNQ Hospi­tal Foun­da­tion’s com­mit­ment to raise $1.4 mil­lion to­wards a sec­ond car­diac catheter lab­o­ra­tory at Cairns Hospi­tal.

Foun­da­tion fundrais­ing and mar­ket­ing man­ager Glenys Dun­combe said a sec­ond lab­o­ra­tory would pre­vent hun­dreds of peo­ple hav­ing to travel away for life­sav­ing pro­ce­dures.

“Re­cent re­search has shown that our re­gion is among the worst in the coun­try for heart dis­ease and we have also been hear­ing that our pop­u­la­tion and tourist num­bers are grow­ing quite rapidly,” she said.

Fundrais­ing from the 2017 Mount Franklin Car­diac Chal­lenge will go to­wards the sec­ond catheter lab­o­ra­tory, as well as a car raf­fle that re­cently be­gan at the hospi­tal.

A group of Ma­reeba res­i­dents will sweat it out for char­ity this month. Pic­tured is David Elms, Mary Nay­lor, Jill Tay­lor, Kath Elms, Pam Lavis, Dayna Sclippa, Nicky Cek, Deb­bie Jerome, Carmel Brig­nolo, Robyn Camp­man and Ray­mond Jerome.

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