And so it’s done again for another year: a whole lot of people riding an awful long way and having a rather nice time.
With a little over 200 riders (including some very last minute registrations, tut tut…), we were treated to a beautiful warm evening with a gently southerly tail wind.
Massive thanks to our tea Stop Volunteers at Mt White: Mike, Natti and Naomi. And at Budgewoi: Victoria, Prue (who also snapped some of these great photos) and Benjamin.
These guys give up a whole night of sleep and miss the joys of the night riding to keep folks fed and watered and we couldn’t have run the event without them. Riders often express that this is one of their favourite aspects of the event and how much it help them get through the dark hours. This year at least three struggling riders were given lifts by our courteous tea stop crew, which is truly going above and beyond.
Thanks to the Audax Club of Australia for supporting and insuring our ride. If you have gotten the long distance riding bug, check out their rides calendar as they have rides on throughout the year.
Thanks to Dieter at York Lane Bar, not only did he work furiously in the kitchen to make sure folks got fed but then he jumped on the bike and joined us for the ride as well. It’s marvellous to be able to start the event and do registrations at York Lane and we appreciate the support.
Also massive thanks to our prize sponsors.
Metro Cycles in Newcastle
Ghost Gum Bikes in Newcastle
K-lite Australian made dynamo lights
Wheely Convenient mobile bike mechanics
Omafiets Dutch Bicycles in Redfern
Killen Bikes. Custom frame builder in Newtown
This year we experimented with drawing out a random completed Brevet card at the finish. This experiment was hampered somewhat by some Newcastle lout stealing our Brevet box sometime between later afternoon Sat and the wee hours of Sunday morning. We did really put a box there honest:
Anyway, some bright spark early finishers started a pile of cards, and it was from this pile that Maisey from Ghost Gum Bikes and Kerry from K-Lite drew at random around 8am. The winner was Rachel Hayden who was extremely excited to take home a set of Bikepacker Pro 1,200Lm dynamo lights.
Most Inappropriate bike:
This is always a hotly contested category and this year was no exception.
Honourable mentions should go to:
Ric on his long tail and extremely heavy cargo bike (who made the very sensible decision to bail at Gosford)
Amanda Cleif (who won last year for riding a fat bike) on a rather lovely vintage road bike complete with wicker basket, tea set and croissants packed for the morning. This is not exactly wrong, in fact it’s almost spot on perfect, but it needed a special mention somewhere.
Bart riding the “Omafiets snack wagon” an Omnium cargo bike with a mailbox full of chips on the front.
But really, anyone who saw these guys riding knew they had this prize in the bag, and so the award for most inappropriate bike has to go to “Team Reddy-go”.
These bikes, for the uninitiated, are rather heavy, use solid rubber tires (drastically increased rolling resistance), have only three speeds, and a limit range of seat adjustability. In all honesty they make riding across town a bigger challenge than usual, and so riding 180km on one of these bikes can only be regarded as herculean. Top marks to Jason, Justin and Jose. Jose gets a particular mention as his longest ride previously was in the order of 30-40km., what a step up!
This either the easiest or the hardest prize to win depending on your perspective. We would suggest its the hardest, as even riding slowly, simply being on the bike for 13+ hours is a massive effort.
This year the award goes to Kai:
Kai was actually nominated for the Camaraderie award by several people. But the very great lengths he went to to ensure other riders were looked after also put him towards the back. Kai would have finished with Team Ready go but disappeared within sight of Newcastle baths, meaning the clock kept ticking. His disappearance was interpreted by the ride organisers as an attempt to avoid being nominated for last arrival or even for other awards so we left the clock ticking, current presumed riding time is now 168 hours plus.
His nomination from Jason, which we have copied below:
“Kai made it his mission to leave no-one behind. Riding at a walking pace up Mt White with a rider suffering bad cramps to provide company and added safety. When team ReddyGo approached we could see them from a long way off due to the awesome reflective vest Kai had. This would have been a great comfort for the cramping rider as there seemed to be a larger than normal number of boy racers on that section of the highway this year. Team ReddyGo had two very close calls on the bends of between Cowan and Mt White. After the Mt White stop Kai was aware a few riders had taken a wrong turn at berowra and ended up on the motorway. So at the next main intersections, where an absent minded rider could make that same mistake, he stood and gave directions to ensure everyone went the right way. He continued to act as broom wagon along the ride ensuring that the slower riders got the encouragement and support they needed. I rode with him for the first half of the fernleigh track as I had become last on the road after a few too many Instagram stops. Kai’s conversation almost made me forget about the fact that I was climbing along there. Jose (also from Team ReddyGo) had the pleasure of his company at the very rear of the ride from about the midpoint of the fernleigh track to the very end. At which point Kai disappeared. If it wasn’t for the fact that everyone at the baths knew him I would have questioned whether Kai was a real person or a mythical trail angel. Sent to provide support to those who needed it and vanishing without a trace.”
As fitting for a “mythical trail angel” this blurry polaroid is the only photo we have of Kai: He wins a $100 voucher for Omafiets Dutch Bicycles in Redfern
Award for Camaraderie:
This years award for camaraderie goes to someone who goes to enormous efforts to bring good spirits to their riding and is a huge motivator and supporter for others cycling. In past years this award has gone to riders who have helped others in a moment of low spirits, with mechanicals, crashes or other disasters. But this year we wanted to take a back step and reward someone who does the hard yards week in week out motivating others to ride and breaking down barriers to involvement in the cycling community.
Jullietta Jung has for the last several years organised a sizeable contingent of riders to take on the Newcastle Overnight. Partially as a logical flow on from her work with Sydney Night Rides, and partly just from her normal enthusiasm for all things cycling. This welcoming and encouraging group are always a pleasure to see on the Newcastle Overnight, playing music and looking out for each other. After volunteering at a Tea Stop last year, Jules was riding again this year and is very deserving of the award.
Jullietta wins a custom stem kindly donated from local frame builder Sean Killen at Killen Bikes
Special mention should also go to:
Sean for fixing a fellow riders gear shifting problems right after stopping to fix his own flat when he probably just wanted to put his head down and catch up with other riders.
Josh for fixing another riders stripped crank with a brand new crank in the nick of time at 8pm on the Saturday night.
And thats a wrap for this year, look forward to seeing you all next year !