The final day on tour has now been and gone. The time on tour flew by, yet again and we had a blast! I got out of bed and got myself ready for the day that lay ahead. I donned the very special green jersey, green helmet, stripy cap and a pair of green glasses. It felt very special to have the honour of wearing the green jersey amongst the peleton today and also to share the road with Conor's parents. Another great TdC memory in the bank.
It was an early start this morning. We had 120kms to travel to get to our final destination, Brisbane. We had our breakfast, and said our fair-wells to Berlinda and Doug (our cooks on tour). These two lovely people did a wonderful job of making sure we had all the fuel we needed in our bellies each day. From breakfast, to morning tea, to lunch, to afternoon tea. It was delicious food! The whole team looked forward to stopping each day in a local park, or a school to see what amazing meal had been prepared from the back of their truck. A big thank you to Berlinda and Doug!
We rolled out of Esk at 6:15am. We knew that we had to keep the pace up to make it on time to this afternoon's finale lunch. Our day was broken up into two 60km sections with a morning tea stop in the middle. The first 60kms went pretty quickly. It was a bit up and down, but we all worked together and kept a good pace. There were a lot of tired bodies on the bikes today and we all made sure that we were looking out for one another when encouragement was needed.
Our morning tea stop was at a football ground where some local teams were warming up before their Saturday morning game. We mingled with the parents and players on the sideline and handed out our famous spray-on sunscreen. Chicken and salad wraps and a variety of chocolate biscuits were on the menu, with a coke or a coffee to wash it all down.
I found Stephanie working away in the background, making sure that the route had been entered correctly into the Lexus's GPS and that she knew where we were riding to next.
The behind the scenes work that the support crew do is unbelievable and very inspiring.
For the second leg of todays stage, we caught a barge! Our tour convoy reached the Moggill ferry and made our way across the Brisbane River. We were almost home! But there was one more obstacle to get through before we reached the finished line. Gap Creek Road was ahead of us! Gap Creek Road is a nice smooth road with 4-5 "lumps" along the way. Local road riding clubs liek to use this run for hill training... Our legs were burning, but we could smell the cold drinks and hugs from family and friends waiting for us at the finish line. With the TdC catchphrase "Yes I Can!" in all of our minds, we dug deep and tackled the climbs with no worries. From here, we started to hit a bit of Brisbane City traffic. The lead and rear cars did a great job of managing the traffic around us, so we were out of harms way. We entered the New Farm Parklands ring road and we knew we were on the home straight.
With the Queensland riders on the front of the peleton, we rolled into the crowd of family and friends who were awaiting our arrival. We stepped off our bikes and the congratulation hugs were shared all round. We were finished! What an amazing effort by the whole team to get everyone home safe. Well done TdC Team!
My journey for the QLD Country Tour for 2013 has been very special. I have now ridden in parts of my home state that I have never ridden before. I have met some amazing adults and children in locals communities along the way who have inspired me to continue working hard and to bring those dollars in for TdC. for this tour I raised over $5000 to help fight the horrible disease that is ruining the lives of so many people and I have made many new friendships that im sure will last a lifetime. The people that I had the pleasure of riding with in this tour have been awesome. I am very proud to have been able to share this experience with such a fantastic group of people.
Many thanks goes to the organisers of this tour, Geoff, Samantha and Victor. I cant thank you enough for having Stephanie and I along to join in the fun. I cant wait to do it all again with you soon!
Strava stats, lots of photos, Raffle prize winner and much more to come in the coming updates. Thanks for all the support you have given Stephanie and I over the last week, It really boosted us along and got us home. Good night everyone!