What a week for the 21 Zoo2Zoo riders taking on the 500+ kilometre challenge!

On a cold Thursday morning last week, nine Member set off from Taronga Zoo bound for Western Plains Zoo in Central West NSW. After safety checks and briefings, Tattersalls Member and Black Dog Institute Chair Peter Joseph AM spoke to the group about the importance of the Institute’s mission and how the Zoo2Zoo fundraiser helps achieve its goals.

Following this, the 21 riders, of which Tattersalls fielded nine Members: Mike Hanrahan, John Edstein, Andre Giroux, Kieran Horth, Jon Michel, Paul Hunter, Mandy Smith, Greg Ball and Chris Chapman, began their journey.

The weather held off for Day 1, and our Members maintained a high level of excitement as they neared the foothills of the Blue Mountains and got set to climb. Members climbed the hill with ease and rode on to Katoomba feeling fresh and ready for the next challenge.

Day 2 started with torrential rain and high winds, meaning the planned ride along the one-lane Great Western Highway had to be abandoned. The day’s riding instead commenced from Lithgow and saw the riders set off to Lake Lyell and then onto Blayney. After a forced emergency stop, the riders headed towards Orange and three massive hill climbs (the incline reaching 19 degrees) and finished in Bathurst via Tarana and O’Connell.

On Day 3 with depleted legs, the riders then took in all of the beautiful town of Orange, including a bonus 14km ride taking in the beauty of Lake Canobolas.

Day 4 started the group heading to their final destination of Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo. After stopping off at the world-famous Banjo Patterson Museum in Yeovil, the peloton headed towards the finish line.

A real sense of accomplishment was felt among Members as they crossed the line, with their physical achievements being well-supported by the real reason they were there, to raise funds and awareness for the Black Dog Institute.

As such, Tattersalls is proud to announce the team had set the goal of raising $5,000 from the ride, however, these amazing riders raised over $12,000 to support Black Dog’s specialist programs to help with depression and bipolar disorder.

Besides the riders, we of course need to give a special mention to the support team of Athletic Manager Malcolm Turnbull, Trainer Damian Tancred, and Member Services’ Jared Patira who helped make this ride go so smoothly.

Below mentioned are some Members’ testimonies:

After the event: enjoyable and a sense of achievement. During the event while on the bike… enjoyment was much more muted. A total of 24 hours on a bike seat over four days and some amazingly steep hill climbs in high winds, contributed to that. The skill levels were impressive and the camaraderie was special. Thanks to all riders for your tremendous company and a very special thanks to our Tatts support crew of Mal, Jared and Damo.  Not only did they provide superlative logistical support, but they were also constant sources of enthusiasm and encouragement.” ~ John Edstein.

“Tough 500 kilometre course, challenging conditions, amazing country scenery, fantastic company, professional support crew, iconic country towns, excellent country hospitality, $12,280 raised by Tatts Members & friends for a wonderful cause. Tatts and it’s members at their best” ~ Michael Hanrahan.

Donations are still open, so please click here if you would like to make a contribution.