Cycling 100 kilometres hurts! At about the 40km mark there is a build-up of lactic acid in the legs that starts to burn but at the 99km mark it all goes away as the thrill of achievement overrides the pain. But more than the pain in the legs or sense of, is the feeling that what you have done is doing good for those who are too sick to contemplate a bike ride.
The Reach4Research cycled classic in support of the Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute is celebrating its 10th year. Since the first ride in 2007, thousands of cyclists have taken part in this major fundraising effort for Ballarat's cancer research facility.
Cancer touches the lives of many; 1 in 2 people will be diagnosed before they reach 85. For the families who watch their loved ones suffer, research is vital; while people continue to be affected by this disease of many types, research must continue to ensure better outcomes for those diagnosed.
Many of the participants have had close family members deal with cancer. Gary Armstrong watched his 8-year-old daughter go through treatment for leukaemia. He will ride 100km to raise money for other families going through what he has experienced. David Webb will ride 85kms as he has done before, in memory of Diane Thomassen. As Stephen Ball undertakes the 50km mountain bike challenge, he will remember his pop who died five years ago. Ash Burke, Paul Camileri and Darren Graham will all ride in the 100km route in memory of their fathers and father-in-law. Many of the participants in the cycled events and the lake walk, will take part to ensure that what they and their family members have endured has meaning and that more people survive this disease.
All money raised in the Reach4Research is used to fund six research projects currently underway. FECRI is a world recognised research facility that is making a significant contribution to research, so that in future, the stories behind the ride will have happier endings.