Marist Sion students make up peleton
Taking on the Great Victorian Bike Ride will pose a physical challenge for 13 students and five adults from Marist Sion College.
Having participated in last year’s ride from Wilson’s Promontory to Trafalgar, students, staff and parents from the college will take in beautiful countryside, great country towns and a holiday atmosphere like no other feature for the 35th edition of the annual event.
The group has been working on its cycle fitness since August, but the 339km journey from Bright to Rutherglen which began on Saturday requires that they dig deep into their energy reserves.
The event began in Bright, famous for being one of Victoria’s most scenic and bike friendly destinations, nestled in the foothills of the alpine region.
There are overnight stops at: Beechworth (two nights), Tallangatta, Rutherglen (two nights and rest day), Yarrawonga and Glenrowan. It will finish after 541 kilometres in Benalla. The Marist Sion team will complete the five-day ride.
Marist Sion College ride coordinator Peter Coghlan said Marist-Sion College has a keen culture of cycling within both staff and students, with this year seeing an increased use of the purposebuilt bicycle compound, particularly for students and staff making their daily commute from home to school.
“Riders this year have been supported by the risk management team at the college, including Jacqueline Fox, Sian Van Berlo and Sally Ablett to ensure a positive and safe experience is had by all,” he said.
“This epic trip offers students an opportunity to gain many of life’s necessary personal development, self-reliance and independence skills through a common experience.”
The Great Victorian Bike Ride is a fully supported camping holiday and is the biggest multi-day bike ride in the southern hemisphere.
There is extensive support provided including meals, luggage transport and on-route assistance. It includes a licensed cafe, bar and restaurant under canvas, full medical team, entertainment and bicycle maintenance facilities.
Bicycle Network has been offering the event since 1984, and in 2018 more than 30 schools and people from across the state and beyond make up the 3000 strong peloton.
Ready to take on the Great Victorian Bike Ride are Marist Sion College students and staff, from left Manfred Norman, Jack Champion, Jude Whiteside, Harry Graafsma, Caspian Jackman-Riches, Huon Coghlan, Nicholas Winchcombe, Mitchell Allatt, Tom Brook and Peter Coghlan (seated at front); Absent: Fletcher Waddell, Max Richards.