On Saturday, only a colorful sea of red could be seen from miles away over Geelong as a large number of cyclists, in their thousands joined up in the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road People’s Ride.
Over the weekend, the public event which served as an entrée to the world-class elite races saw riders of all abilities take part in one of either the 65m or 111km courses.
Clint Pickin, a 28 year old dairy farmer who had lost a leg during a work accident about three years ago was among the riders participating in the race.
“I did three months’ worth of rehab — just in rehab itself — four months’ worth of running in Melbourne, then I bought a trainer off my cousin and cheap bike and started off going 10km/h,” he said.
Pickin who noted that he improved and did the race faster, also lamented that the race never got any easier.
“I did it faster — it never gets easier, any cyclist will say the same thing, you improve but nothing gets easier,” he said.
It was his second time at the 111km ride and he still continues to push himself further so that he can do even better.
Geelog’s Jason Bakker, Cadel Evans manager also participated in the race.
Bakker who spoke after the race felt it was the best public ride currently in Australia. According to him, despite the large crowd that participates in the event, they try not to encroach and cover the road so as to make it comfortable for all participants.
He also believes the public ride which enables people from various walks of life and abilities to take part allows them to have a feel of the race before going on to watch the pros in a course that has been designed for elite riders.