WARRNAMBOOL’S strong support for the annual Around the Bay bike ride has been recognised as part of 20th anniversary celebrations.
Bicycle Network Victoria (BNV) said more than 180 cyclists from the Warrnambool district had taken part in the ride around Port Phillip Bay since it began in 1993.
BNV event manager Darren Allen said he hoped more Warrnambool cyclists would help the event reach the 20,000 riders target for the anniversary ride on Sunday, October 21.
The event is Australia’s largest mass participation bike ride and offers cyclists the opportunity to ride 50, 100, 135, 210 or 250 kilometres in a day.
Mr Allen presented Warrnambool mayor Jacinta Ermacora with a front cog set that will be part of a “Bay Bike” assembled from bike parts given to regional communities throughout Victoria that have given ongoing support for the ride.
“A lot of people travel long distances to be part of the event,” Mr Allen said.
Among the Warrnambool cyclists taking part in this year’s event is David Clift, who will be notching up his eighth Around the Bay.
“Around the Bay offers regional riders like myself the opportunity to share in the joy of riding in large pelotons and realise there are many other locals who share the same passion,” Mr Clift said.
Mr Allen also applauded Warrnambool City Council for its support of the Warrnambool-Port Fairy Rail Trail.
He said rail trails were a great place for people who were not ready to ride on the road.
Cr Ermacora said Warrnambool had a strong cycling community, which council had sought to foster by providing infrastructure such as shared pathways.
Many shared pathways linked up to the rail trail and were becoming part of a commuter network to and from the city centre, the mayor said.