George (Leader) Mish ( Kelpie ) Ian ( Charlie ) Gordo (Border Collie ) Photographer ! Poss( Kelpie )Timmy
Ride Report by George Fong
Just a really quick report on the ride at the weekend.
Congratulations Ballarat Riders :-) And thanks to the Torquay contingent, Paul, Linda (in the Pink Dress!) Leanne and Chris, fro coming up all the way to meet us at the start point here in Ballarat.
I turned up at Ballarat Town Hall at 7:30am just to make sure that someone was there. It was to say the least ... cold. I was hoping for about 15 - 20 bikes to turn up. Got a bit worried at 8am but then people and bikes started rolling. In fact they kept rolling in and by the time we had done the briefing and started off, there were 40+ bikes of all size and style.
We left tentatively for Creswick and Daylesford. This was a new mix of riders so we did our best to keep the pack together. On temporary non-starter who broke down at the start but he caught up.
We weaved our way through Creswick and Daylesford and as we headed down the Ballan Road from Daylesford to the Highway, the temps dropped and the heavens opened up. But no dramas.
Down onto the highway and we did a regroup at the BP station on the highway(and some did a dryout around the wood fire inside.) We then headed down to Bacchus Marsh and threaded or way through town and to the Train Station.
It wa a nice feeling to roll up and see 8 - 9 bikes waiting for us!
Quick stop to do some more registrations and we the headed down the final leg, through the Ballan Road to Werribee and Hoppers Crossing .
Hitting the suburban streets was alwys going to be a challenge with any group over 20. And I will readily concede to some internal panic as lead rider as I approached a major turn off (Bolton/Heaths Road) ... and didn't recognise it! Someone had taken some signs down that were really prominent in the recces was did in the weeks before. Do I turn or do I go straight???
Last minute ... TURN! Thankfully. Possum Green reacted quickly and parked her bike up on the curb and pointed everyone through. Paul Andrews on the Hayabusa and directly behind me saw my dilemma and turned in quickly with me and the rest of the crew came through without incident.
Through the lights and roundabouts and eventually into the closed off high St of Point Cook. It was quite a sight to see 50 odd bikes from Ballarat, Bacchus Marsh and Torquay come in as a single group ... as I understand it, the biggest single group of the day.
There ware about 700 bikes here and lost more supports. We deposited over $1,000 from registrations to the organisers (and that didn't include the online registrations) and as far as I can gather from circulating around everyone as all of us joined in the festivities, everyone ended up enjoying the event.
One of the good things about the day were the 4 marshals who teamed up with me to make sure everyone was guided through OK. They did a magnificent job. My thanks to Ian Florence (Yamaha FJ1200) who took up the hardest task of being Tail End Charlie and Gordon Bouse (Yamaha R1), Mishalee Stulpinas (Honda Hornet) and Possum Green (Green Kawasaki z1000), who played kelpies/border collie (Gordon!) to make sure the group was kept together.
Well done ppl. An enjoyable ride, well mannered and considerate riders, the chance to meet new people and the opportunity to raise some money for a very worthwhile cause.