Viridian unites to fight cancer

Viridian unites to fight cancer

Viridian unites to fight cancer 1610 1295 Ian Granter

On Sunday October 27th a team of Viridian riders united to fight cancer. They stood (or shall we say pedalled) in solidarity with Todd Clifford, General Manager Viridian Select, who’s sister Kim unfortunately passed away from cancer earlier this year. The team has raised over $25,000 so far. If you’d like to donate to the cause you still can by clicking here.

Hugh Goodfellow has kindly shared with us his recollection of the ride:

“Standing outside Melbourne Museum at 6:30am with a collection of Viridian’s most colourful characters would not usually be my first choice when it comes to Sunday activities. However, this Sunday the nine of us were joined by 2,000 others who had all come together to walk, run and ride their way help find a cure for cancer.

With Viridian United assembled, it became apparent that we may have put a little more time and effort into fundraising than pre ride but as we made our way to the start line you couldn’t help but be swept up in the day. Once Mitch had made his 8th trip to the toilet and Andy realised it was a good idea to pump up his tires pre ride we were underway!

As we snaked our way out of the city one thing became clear – Piers Bolger was team leader. His cries of “SLOWING!” & “ROLLING!” swept over the crowd of riders and provided the metal we needed to begin the day. At the time I don’t think any of us realised this would last the whole day.

The ride opened up about 10km in as we made our way around Fisherman’s Bend. It was time to try out our big group riding technique. We bunched together, tucked in and worked through rotations at the front. We were flying! But before our ego could get the better of us, a flat shoed commuter bike rider zipped straight past, it was the reality check we needed. We were later informed she had a work shift after the ride and didn’t want to leave anything to chance.

We began catching and absorbing groups and before we knew it, we were at the halfway point in Carrum. So far so good, no flats and smiles all round as we loaded up on energy gels before heading out again.

It was the return leg and spirits were high. Little did we know that the return leg would require navigational nous. We set off across the planes of Bonbeach – single file behind Tom Smith as the wind battered the group on Wells Rd.

As we switched the backstreets of Edithvale for Sandringham, we faced real adversity. The adversity of having a bloke from Sydney as our chief navigator for a ride in Melbourne. Piers leading 10 riders around a roundabout for two full rotations at 10:30am in residential Sandringham while calmly informing us that he wasn’t sure where to go will stay with me for a long time.

But sure, enough we got back on track… for a little while. I now found myself up the front, but we were also now on St Kilda road. After hearing comments come from behind about the ride not actually being meant to track onto St Kilda road, I did what any good leader does under pressure, I doubled down and asserted that despite being on St Kilda road this was the right route… it wasn’t. But nonetheless after some healthy debate we got to North Road and were welcome by the sight of a volunteer guiding us to our final pitstop at 85km.

We started to believe that we might make it, we might actually finish the ride together. Traversing our way through the rolling mountains of Malvern and Kew, quads pumping, sweat dripping we found ourselves the brink. But as breaking point hit we swapped the heights of Hawthorn for the tram tracked trails of Abbotsford. Smiles were back on faces, we were just 5km from our goal.

As the clock ticked over 4 hours in the saddle, we pulled back into the Melbourne Museum together, we had done it. 100 kilometres had been ridden, Viridian had raised $25k and the event nudged over $1.5m.

It was a day I will not forget anytime soon. I couldn’t be prouder our team and everyone who took part on the day. A huge thanks to everyone who donated to this special event for a such a great cause.”

Todd Clifford, has also shared his thoughts on what this day meant to him:

“Having just finished the Peter Mac ride for cancer research I wanted to share a heartfelt Thank you on behalf of my family and I.

Thank you to the group of great guys I shared the day and ride with.  The way you all embraced the spirit of the  day, the lead up, your fund raising efforts and in particular the warmth you showed by brother in law Jacques who attended was amazing.

To all the well wishers, Ian Granter and the Virdian Community for your support along the journey and recently – thank you

A final Thank you to those who donated, we are approaching $25k and your hard earned donations will make a significant difference in the ongoing fight against this hideous disease.

The experience has been very cathartic for me and my family.  Whilst it can’t change the outcome it shows from real challenges positive things can flow.  I know Kim would be tremendously grateful and feel very proud.”