Adelaide to Tailem Bend – 111km

We set off this morning without breaking tradition. The weather condition on the first day of each leg has been rain with a gusty wind. It was no different today, the Adelaide weather baptized our newly joined riders Kailee, Emma, Tammy, Phil, Joe & Paul with gusto.

Our first stop was at the Royal Adelaide Hospital to farewell the team that worked a miracle – saving Kerryn’s life. How do you really say thank you to people that have given you such a gift? Thank you doesn’t seem to express the intense gratitude & emotion, no matter how many thank yous are said by a number of people.

Obviously, it wasn’t enough for Kerryn. This remarkable woman went further and expressed with her actions, how she felt about the amazing team at the RAH and honoured them by founding the START Foundation.

After our final good-byes to the RAH we headed up the Adelaide Hills while being battered by strong winds and rain. We had the company of extra riders Matt, Sonya & John who also endured the weather to support us. The miserable weather would have felt worse, if we were not subjected to the beautiful views of the Adelaide Hills offered us and riding through the gorgeous little towns along the way.

At the summit we said our good-byes to Matt & John. Sonya also left us at this point but we hope to see her at Ballarat for our final ride into Melbourne.

Riding on we stopped at Kanmantoo for a very welcomed tea break. Janette directed us to a lovely little park with lots of flair. Her new routine with the pink pom poms and sporting a new bright blue wig made me think of a female version of David Bowie.

Sandra, Sonya’s mum supplied us with delicious homemade cakes which were consumed in record time. While having this break, the sun came out. It warmed our backs as we continued on our bikes but the gusty wind continued, giving us a mixture of a tail wind & a side wind, far from ideal riding conditions.

Lunch was at Murray Bridge at a bakery which provided us all with warm shelter and plenty of food & hot drinks. After a decent break we hopped back on our bikes to ride the last stage to Tailem Bend. This leg provided us with a great view of the Murray River as we crossed over the bridge. Shortly afterwards we all arrived at our accommodation safely in spite of todays weather conditions, all eager for a hot shower and a good feed at the local pub.

Richard Cooke