After a quick warm up from Sydney to Cronulla, the Cyclist team caught the ferry across Port Hacking to ‘officially’ start the ride from the small village of Bundeena, located just 29km south of Sydney CBD.
From there we entered the Royal National Park and immediately encountered lush vegetation and challenging climbs before flattening out and taking a detour down to Garie Beach. Once at the bottom we started the 2.5-kilometre ride back to the top with a 7.4 per cent average gradient over 200m in elevation. Once at the top it was over to Otford Lookout and Bald Hill before descending into Stanwell Park and onto Sea Cliff Bridge.
Following the 665m of sweeping turns and vistas from Sea Cliff, we rode through Australia’s original coal mining communities of Clifton Hill and Coalcliff, passed popular surf spots in Austinmer and the township of Thirroul, made famous by author D.H. Lawrence, before reaching our final destination in Wollongong.
Total distance: 62km
Total elevation: 906m
Gong Ride 2013
Ten thousand cyclists will converge on the road from Sydney to Wollongong on Sunday 3 November for the 32nd annual MS Gong Ride. They will be riding to raise $4.5 million for people living with multiple sclerosis, a devastating neurological condition that affects more than 23,000 Australians.Their 90km journey will take a scenic route along the Princes Highway, through the Royal National Park and across the Sea Cliff Bridge.
What: MS Gong Ride
Where: Sydney, Australia
How far: 90 kilometres
When: Sunday 3 November 2013
Why: To raise $4.5 million for Australians with MS, their families and carers.
Sign up: Visit www.gongride.org.au (entries are capped at 10,000)
Trivia: The Gong Ride uses more road cones than any other event in New South Wales.
Read more in Cyclist, full feature article in issue one