The Australian Para-cycling Road Nationals, which is also the fourth and final round of the National Para-cycling Series, is on May 10-11 in Echuca, Victoria. It’s with some regret that we announce that Tandem Armidale won’t be attending. At least not without some divine intervention.
We have enjoyed the two rounds of the NPS we attended in Toowoomba and Bathurst, and are thrilled to have held on to the Leaders Jersey after round 3 in Perth. However as happens, life gets in the way.
Firstly getting to Echuca is difficult. Driving to Bathurst and Toowoomba made the whole thing fairly easy to deal with. A drive to Echuca would take something like 14 hours, which would be quite exhausting. The other option would be to fly from Armidale to Sydney and then to Melbourne, where transport would run to Echuca. For two people plus excess baggage we’re looking at around $1,500. In addition we need to pay for food, accommodation and other miscellaneous costs. Putting it bluntly, it’s an expensive trip. Without sponsorship we just can’t afford $2000 or so to go.
On top of that, there’s a time factor. Neither Dave nor Phil are in a position to take much time off work, while I (Andrew) am about to start my Guide Dog program (yes, I’m getting a dog), and the Nationals land right in the middle of the program. Time could be made, but its not ideal.
It wouldn’t be totally impossible to get there time-wise, but it is very difficult. Unless something big happens, that we’re not expecting, we won’t make it to Nationals.
In the meantime we’ll be focusing on getting our new bike, training for some local races and preparing for the 2015 Para-cycling season.
To our fellow competitors: it’s been fantastic to meet you all. To the tandem riders: we’re on 36 points. Zac Clarkson has 20 points, but has announced he won’t be attending either, so Don Mankewich and Casey Hyde both have 20 points. Guys, you need 16 to equal us and 17 to beat us for the NPS Jersey… go hard!
We’d like to thank Cycling Australia for putting the NPS on this year, we’ve really enjoyed it. Rest assured we will be back next year. Thanks also to all the volunteers, the Bathurst Cycling Club and the Toowoomba Cycling Development Corporation for rounds 1 and 2.