Chain Reaction’s second event for the year was held last week, with riders of the New South Wales Challenge taking on a huge course all in the name of raising much needed funds for the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute.
Not to be outdone by their Victorian counterparts, 29 NSW riders tackled a supremely challenging course of no less than 1,177km through Victoria’s High Country, over the Snowy Mountains and via Australia’s highest town, Cabramurra, down through Canberra and Bowral before finishing in Sydney. Not only was it one of the longest courses ever in a Chain Reaction Challenge, but riders also climbed almost 13,000m in the process, spending over 44 hours in the saddle. Massive!
But the seven days of exhausting work, riding through all sorts of weather conditions, was all in the name of raising money for a very worthy charity partner, the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute (VCCRI). By event completion, Chain Reaction’s 29 riders had raised over $715,000 to fund a critical research project to help find a cure for congenital heart disease – the most common birth defect in newborn babies.
Images from the week will be available soon on our website, however, in the meantime, a selection can be viewed on our Facebook page. The daily blog and videos are also available on the website by clicking here.
Despite the gruelling work, the rain and near freezing starts, it was quite simply an epic week. All riders had what can only be described as a brilliant time and we have already had a number of people say they’ll be back next year – the best feedback of all. This combined with the outstanding fundraising effort makes the week nothing short of an enormous success.
Congratulations to all riders and our fantastic support crew.
Last week, the first event of the 2013 Chain Reaction calendar was held in Victoria, with 42 riders conquering what is arguably the toughest event the Foundation has ever hosted.
Not only were riders required to master the 1000km in seven days course, as is the case with all Chain Reaction rides, but they also had to conquer the immense challenge of scaling Mt Buffalo, Mt Hotham, Falls Creek, Falls Creek East, Mt Buller, Lake Mountain and Mt Donna Buang in successive days. For your average weekend warrior aged between 35 and 60, it was clearly no average bike ride.
But seven days of gruelling work, and not to mention the four months of training prior, was all in the name of raising money for two very worthy children’s charities, the Starlight Children’s Foundation and the Royal Children’s Hospital’s PIPER ambulance service. By event completion, Chain Reaction’s 42 riders had raised over $920,000 to fund the Starlight Express Room and Captain's Ward Visitation Program at the Monash Children's Hospital, and also the purchase of a brand new, purpose built ambulance for critically ill babies and children.
Images from the week will be available soon via the website, however, in the meantime, a selection can be viewed on our Facebook page. The daily blog and videos are also available on the website by clicking here.
It was, simply put, a brilliant event and all riders, whilst being battered on the bike, agreed that it was an incredibly rewarding experience made all the better by the fantastic fundraising effort by all.
We now look forward to hosting our New South Wales ride, starting on 27 April 2013, followed by our Queensland ride, starting on 11 May 2013.
On Friday 25 January 2013, Chain Reaction took its first steps into the Adelaide charity bike ride market, as special guests Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwen and Mike Tomalaris joined the Adelaide business community at an exclusive Chain Reaction cocktail party.
With the goal of launching its first South Australian based ride in November 2013, Chain Reaction was eager to take advantage of the excitement created by the 2013 Tour Down Under to showcase Chain Reaction to the Adelaide business community.
Over 100 prominent business people were in attendance at the Crowne Plaza in Adelaide as CEO, John Ward, and Chairman and Founder, Berrick Wilson, told the Chain Reaction story and explained why it is the charity bike ride of choice in the business community.
The true highlight of the evening was the fantastic Q&A session, with Mike Tomalaris asking Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen all the pressing questions in the world of pro cycling, including the mandatory question about Lance Armstrong.
The event was a huge success for Chain Reaction, but now the task shifts to recruiting major team sponsors and ensuring that the November ride is as successful as it can possibly be.
The evening was generously hosted by James Hines from the Hines Property Group.
Phil was also kind enough to go for a quick cycle with a group of Chain Reaction riders around Adelaide on the Friday morning.
We are pleased to announce that Chain Reaction's Facebook page is now online and ready for you to view. Containing all of the best and most recent information on what's happening at Chain Reaction, our Facebook page contains news stories, photos, videos, regular updates and information on what our charity partners are up to.
The Facebook page is a fantastic resource for all riders, alumni, families and anyone else that is interested in what we do. The best part is, you don't need to be a registered user of facebook to be able to take advantage of the page. Just simply click the link below and all content is there for you to view. If you're a non-Facebook user and do decide to sign up, you can "Like" the Chain Reaction page so any new updates are automatically fed to your Facebook account. How easy is that! Of course, if you're still a little tentative, get the kids (or grand kids for some of us) to show you how! It really is simple.
Chain Reaction is also very active on Twitter and, newly, Instagram also, so make sure you follow us on these social media platforms too. On Twitter, follow us at ChainReactionV and on Instagram at chainreactionau.
If you have any content you'd potentially like to post on any Chain Reaction social media platform, please contact Andrew Drucker, Marketing Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Chain Reaction Industry Leaders Event was held at the Westfield office in Sydney on Wednesday 30 January, with over 60 people in attendance. The select group of guests heard from Westfield CEO, Steven Lowy AM and Chain Reaction Chairman and Founder, Berrick Wilson, before hearing from special guest Simon Mottram, Founder and CEO of luxury cycling clothing and accessories house, Rapha.
Simon spoke to the audience, a mixture of Chain Reaction riders and sponsors, about building a successful brand and what it takes to create something truly unique in a world dominated by the ‘big’ brands.
Simon created Rapha in 2004 and since its launch, has executed its branding principles with flawless panache. Rapha has evolved into a vibrant emporium for road riders and in 2011 was named one of the 50 fastest growing companies in the United Kingdom. Further, in 2013 Rapha was announced as the new clothing partner of the number one cycling team worldwide, Sky, where current Tour De France champion Bradley Wiggins is the marquee rider.
In a first for Chain Reaction, all rider uniforms in 2013 have been custom made and supplied by Rapha. It is abundantly clear from rider feedback that they are ecstatic to have their training uniform supplied by Rapha, and are certainly making a lasting impression in the peloton, one which is the envy of many riders.
Chain Reaction is thrilled that Simon was able to present at the lunch, especially given his extremely short visit to Australia, and look forward to a long relationship with Rapha.
The first weekend of December saw a group of 20 Chain Reaction participants treated to a fantastic weekend of riding with Australian road race champion and GreenEDGE rider, Simon Gerrans.
Graciously, Simon took Chain Reaction participants on two rides over the course of the weekend, exhibiting some of the beautiful countryside of his local area. The Saturday ride, an undulating loop of approximately 75 kilometres, took riders on a return trip from Mansfield to Jamieson along some stunning country roads. That evening, riders congregated at the Mansfield Produce Store where they were not only treated to an excellent dinner, but also a brilliant account of Simon’s tour year in 2012 and his objectives for 2013. Engrossed in Simon’s tales of the pro tour, especially the detailed narrative of his Milan-San Remo win, Chain Reaction riders could have sat and listened for hours if it wasn’t for the imminent challenge of the next day’s riding task.
Riders opened their hotel room blinds on the Sunday morning to gorgeous sunshine and the prospect of a great, but tough, day’s riding. The task for the day was to conquer the famous Mount Buller climb, with riders rolling from the base in Mansfield to the top and back. A consistent, but undulating, 30 kilometre roll took riders to the base where everyone settled in and made their way up to the summit. Whilst the peloton split up somewhat over the course of the climb, all riders were showing some quality early season form; an encouraging sign at this stage of the year. With absolutely sensational conditions, it was hard not enjoy the ride, even if the climb did inflict some pain in the legs. An easy, controlled decent, followed by a classic roll along some the same great country roads returned riders to Mansfield where they packed up and made their way back to Melbourne.
All in all, it was a simply magnificent weekend. Quality riding, excellent company and the thrill of riding with one of Australia’s best cyclists and all round great guy, Simon Gerrans. What could be better? But it’s important not to forget the significance of the camp as preparation for the Chain Reaction 7 Peaks challenge that looms in March. For many, it was their first significant riding weekend for some time and as we approach Chain Reaction Challenge Victoria 2013 the benefit of this weekend will certainly show.
Be sure to check out all the photos in the gallery section of the Chain Reaction website.
On Monday 3 December 2012, Chain Reaction Challenge Chairman and Founder, Berrick Wilson and New South Wales Organising Committee Chairman Mark Ryan, were bestowed with special awards by the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute (VCCRI).
Berrick was instated as a Life Governor of the Institute in recognition of the fundraising and charitable contribution Chain Reaction has made. This is a wonderful recognition of Berrick’s vision and contribution to the philanthropic sector through the creation and development of the Chain Reaction Challenge Foundation.
As a result of the 2012 ride and the sensational fundraising effort by New South Wales riders, Chain Reaction was able to donate over $740,000 to the VCCRI.
In 2013, the VCCRI is again a major charity partner for the New South Wales ride as Chain Reaction looks to continue its support of this very worthy charity.
Mark Ryan was also welcomed by the VCCRI as an official Ambassador. The Ambassador Award was presented to Mark in recognition of the generous support he has provided to the VCCRI over a number of years.
As further confirmation of this wonderful achievement, one only needs to look at the other recipients of the Life Governor and Ambassador Awards (link below). It is clear that Berrick and Mark are certainly in esteemed company indeed.
Over 130 people were in attendance on Tuesday 20 November at Il Centro in Brisbane, as the Chain Reaction Challenge Queensland 2013 was formally launched with a little help from guest speaker, SBS cycling commentating legend, Mike Tomalaris.
As team sponsors and supporters, as well as future Chain Reaction enthusiasts, gathered for what can only be described as a feast put on by one of Brisbane’s best restaurants, Mike Tomalaris provided some brilliant insights into the world of cycling and the current struggles the sport is seeing after the fallout from the Lance Armstrong debacle.
The lunch was also an opportunity for Chain Reaction Challenge Queensland 2012 team sponsors to be presented with a framed jersey as a token of appreciation for their support.
All-in-all, the event was a tremendous way to launch the 2013 challenge and we look forward to a brilliant ride for the Brisbane and Gold Coast business community next year.
The Chain Reaction team finished a creditable 8th out of 21 teams (4 hours 14 minutes) in the Sydney Rapha Gentlemen’s Race held in the Southern Highlands on Saturday.
Five male CR riders – Charles Moore, Phil Tanner, Mark Davison, Tyson Gunderson and Mark Ryan - were supported by guest pro rider Carlee Taylor from Adelaide. Carlee proved a valuable addition to the team, especially given the hilly course around Berrima and Carlee’s undoubted expertise as an accomplished climber. Carlee, who finished 3rd overall in the female Tour de France, is already a solid friend of Chain Reaction and is preparing for the national road championships in January before heading to take up a position with the Belgian professional team Lotto-Belisol in 2013.
The Gentleman’s Race served as a launch pad in Sydney for the new Rapha Chain Reaction kit which has already drawn praise from CR riders for its quality and clean design.
The race itself was a change of pace for most riders, as it included extended sections of gravel roads and a seemingly endless series of sharp, punchy climbs. The course design was superb, taking riders through some of the most scenic countryside in Australia, and in typical Rapha style the organisation of the race was imbued with the spirit of amateur racing, executed with style and precision.
Chain Reaction’s Sydney bike store Velosophy also entered a team which performed exceptionally well to finish a close third overall.
Congratulations are due to Rapha’s Andy Pike who planned and oversaw this terrific event.
Chain Reaction is delighted to announce the final charity recipients and their funding allocation from proceeds of the 2012 rides.
As a result of fundraising across all three rides in 2012, Chain Reaction proudly donated $2,056,000 to our children’s charity partners.
The donation amounts and the charity recipients for each of the three rides are summarised in the following table:
Starlight Children’s Foundation - $300,000
To run the Starlight Express Room at the Monash Children’s Hospital for 12 months and grant life changing wishes to Starlight children.
Eastern Health Foundation - $240,000
To run the entire BREATHE program, providing babies and children with the highest level of life saving emergency resuscitation equipment at the Box Hill, Maroondah and Angliss hospitals.
Cerebral Palsy Education Centre - $30,000
To assist with the purchase of equipment and teaching aids for children with cerebral palsy.
Aunties & Uncles (Queensland) - $20,000
To help run an early intervention and prevention program targeting vulnerable and disadvantaged children aged 1-12 years.
Children’s Protection Society - $30,000
To help provide early intervention and effective support to Victoria’s most vulnerable children.
Freedom Wheels - $30,000
Run the Freedom Wheels program which custom builds bikes for children with disabilities so that they can enjoy the independence, mobility and a new found sense of pride by riding a bike.
E.motion21 - $30,000
To help run dance and fitness programs for children with Down Syndrome.
Cystic Fibrosis NSW - $20,000
To assist with the provision of high quality health and welfare services for children with cystic fibrosis.
NEW SOUTH WALES
Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute - $740,000
To purchase a microscope that will be used by researchers to help identify the cause of Congenital Heart Disease in newborn children.
Starlight Children’s Foundation - $250,000
To run the Starlight Express Room at the Mater Children’s Hospital for 12 months.
Royal Children’s Hospital - $250,000
To purchase an Endobroncial Ultrasound Machine to be used for the diagnosis and ongoing monitoring of children with severe respiratory diseases such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, bronchitis and pneumonia.
Aunties & Uncles (Queensland) - $44,400
To help run an early intervention and prevention program targeting vulnerable and disadvantaged children aged 1-12 years.
AEIOU - $34,800
To provide educational services and support programs for children with autism.
Aid for the Blind - $23,200
To provide educational tools for children with vision impairment.
Redkite - $11,600
To provide essential support services for children with cancer.
Thank you to everyone for their efforts and helping make 2012 such a fantastic year. We now look forward to our 2013 events across Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland and hope that we can only continue to better our fundraising efforts.
The Chain Reaction Challenge is proud to announce the dates and courses for the 2013 rides across Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. All rides next year will take in some of Australia’s most scenic countryside and will, as always, test the mental strength and fitness of all riders.
Dubbed 7 Peaks in 7 Days, the Chain Reaction Challenge Victoria will be the most challenging ride yet. Riders will tackle the mountain climbs of Mount Buffalo, Mount Hotham, Falls Creek, Dinner Plain, Mount Buller, Lake Mountain and Mount Donna Buang in successive days. All in all, riders will be scaling over 13,000 vertical metres of climbing – almost 5000 more than the previous year.
The ride will start from Bright on Saturday 9 March, and will be based there for the first two nights. Over the journey, riders will visit Milawa, Mansfield, Marysville and Healesville before returning to Melbourne on Friday 15 March.
New South Wales
Riders from Sydney certainly won’t be spared in 2013 either as riders tackle a challenging 1,100km route from Melbourne to Sydney via the Victorian High Country and Snowy Mountains. The ride will depart Melbourne on Friday 27 April and arrive in Sydney on Friday 3 May.
On the journey, Chain Reaction riders will take in some spectacular countryside as they visit towns such as Milawa, Beechworth, Corryong, Cabramurra, Adaminaby, Cooma, Goulburn and Moss Vale.
Just to ensure that no state gets it too easy, Chain Reaction riders in the sunshine state will also be confronted with a challenging course. Riders will venture through south-east Queensland countryside, travelling 1,100km and climbing almost 9,000 vertical metres over the course of their journey.
Whilst the terrain might be difficult, the beautiful scenery should somewhat ease the pain with riders travelling through towns such as Kilcoy, Toowoomba, Stanthorpe, Casino and Byron Bay. The ride will commence from the Sunshine Coast on Saturday 11 May and will finish on the Gold Coast on Friday 17 May 2013.
If you would like to get involved in Chain Reaction 2013, please contact Sarah Richardson on 03 8623 3467 or email@example.com who will be able to provide you with an expression of interest form for you to complete.
It’s certainly been a busy few weeks at Chain Reaction with the committee’s in each state working to finalise the dates and routes for the 2013 rides in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. Each ride is shaping up as being simply brilliant and in the coming weeks we will be able to provide the final detail for each Chain Reaction Challenge in 2013.
In the past couple of weeks, John Ward has also been joined by two new recruits in the Chain Reaction office. Andrew Drucker, Chain Reaction’s new Marketing Manager, has come over to the foundation with wide ranging marketing and communications experience across many different sectors. He is a super-keen cyclist and is already looking forward to getting out there and meeting everyone on the training rides.
Chain Reaction also has a new Events Manager, Sarah Richardson, who will be looking after much of the day-to-day management of the rides and related logistics. Sarah is also an avid cyclist, coming across from Drapac Professional Cycling with a wealth of event management experience.
In other news, the Chain Reaction commemorative books for the 2012 Queensland and Victorian rides are almost complete and will be available shortly. For New South Wales riders, the 2012 commemorative book is already complete and available in our online store. Jump on and get a piece of the 2012 action!
This years Chain Reaction Queensland Challenge, which took place in early May (in perfect weather), saw 44 cyclists ride 1000 kilometres from Rockhampton to Brisbane in 6 days.
The ride passed through iconic Queensland holiday destinations such as Yeppoon, 1770, Hervey Bay & Noosa before arriving in Brisbane to a warm welcome from a large gathering of family and friends. When the riders arrived in Bargara they were reminded of why they are doing the ride by Kerri-Ann and Dwayne who along with their 10 month old son Macca joined the riders for dinner. Kerri-Ann bravely shared Macca's story with all the riders and it reminded them that all the pain and suffering that they will endure on the bike is nothing compared to what Macca's and other children like him have to endure on a daily basis.
This was the second running of the Queensland Chain Reaction Challenge and at the end of the ride over 220 people attended the Gala Dinner at the Hilton Hotel to celebrate another successful week.
Through the generous support of our corporate supporters and personal donors, the 2012 Chain Reaction Queensland Challenge raised over $900,000 for its charity partners. These funds will be shared between our major charity partners, the Starlight Children's Foundation and the Brisbane Royal Childrens Hospital as well as a number of other smaller childrens charities. Both major charity partners are exceptionally worthy causes with the Starlight Childrens Foundation delivering innovative programs that restore the fun, laughter and joy to children that serious illness takes away. The Royal Children's Hospital will use funds raised from Chain Reaction 2012 to purchase an Endobroncial Ultrasound Machine which will be used for the diagnosis and ongoing monitoring of children with severe respiratory diseases such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, bronchitis and pneumonia.
If you would like to see photographs and a daily summary from this years ride please visit our blog at:
The inaugural NSW Chain Reaction Challenge was held in the last week of March and saw 30 cyclists make the 1200km journey from Coolangatta in Queensland to the Art Gallery of NSW in Sydney, taking in some of the most picturesque hinterland and beaches northern NSW has to offer.
Through the generous support of corporate sponsors and personal donations, the 2012 NSW Chain Reaction Challenge raised over $1 million for its charity partner the Victor Chang Cardiac Research institute.
The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute was established in 1994 and now employs more than 130 full-time scientific staff who conduct research into the prevention of heart disease. Heart defects are the most common form of birth defect in newborn babies. Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) is one of the most common forms of birth defect in newborn babies with the more severe cases requiring repeated surgery. The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute has established a multi-disciplinary research program into CHD and conducts world-leading research into the role genes play in this disease.
The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute is an exceptionally worthy cause and will use the money raised by Chain Reaction to establish a Bioinformatics Division and to purchase an Optical Projection Tomography Microscope that will assist in their research into the causes of Congenital Heart Disease.
For full details on the ride and daily blog updates and photos, please go to http://blog.chain-reaction.org.au.
This year's Chain Reaction Victorian Challenge, which took place last week, saw 44 cyclists ride more than 1,100 kilometres around regional Victoria in 7 days. The ride started in Melbourne and travelled through towns such as Ballarat, Nagambie, Milawa, Mt Buller and Trawool before finishing at the Melbourne Town Hall.
On the Mt Buller day, the Chain Reaction riders were joined by over 60 days riders for the challenging and picturesque 16 kilometre climb up Mt Buller. Following the completion of this ride over 140 guests attended a Gala Dinner at the Mt Buller Chalet where guest heard stories from inside the peloton while Chain Reaction rider Troy Upfield shared his daughter Lily’s story with us all.
Through the generous support of our corporate supporters and personal donors, the 2012 Chain Reaction Victorian Challenge raised over $940,000 for its charity partners. These funds will be shared between our major charity partners, the Starlight Children's Foundation and Eastern Health and a number of other smaller children’s charities. Both major charity partners are exceptionally worthy causes with the Starlight Children’s Foundation delivering innovative programs that restore the fun, laughter and joy to children that serious illness takes away while Eastern Health will fund their BREATHE project which provides babies and children with the highest level of life saving emergency resuscitation equipment at the Box Hill, Maroondah and Angliss hospitals.
If you would like to see photographs and a daily summary from this year's ride please visit our blog at:
Phil Liggett, Patron of the Chain Reaction NSW Challenge, has sent all Chain Reaction riders a good luck message for their rides in 2012.
This message can be viewed via the following link:View Video
Chain Reaction NSW riders turned up in force last night for a theory session hosted by the NSW ride's dedicated bike shop - Velosophy - in the Entertainment Quarter at Moore Park.
Velosophy is supporting the NSW event in many ways, including providing its van and staff for the ride as well as a range of coaching, bike fit and maintenance services during the training period.
The store’s founder and director Chris Wright hosted the evening and gave a quick overview of bunch riding skills, safety, maintenance and etiquette on the road. The theory will be put into practice this Saturday when Chris conducts a skills session during the first compulsory training ride for the year.Thanks to Chris and his team at Velosophy for their generous and enthusiastic support of Chain Reaction. Thanks also to stand-in photographer Bruce Phillips.
Chain Reaction riders from around Australia hit Adelaide for the TDU and in between watching the pros and visiting the wineries managed to squeeze in a two-hour ride with world cycling legend and Chain Reaction Patron Phil Liggett.
Despite his heavy schedule of commitments at the Tour Phil was generous with his time, getting to know the CR bunch, posing for endless photos and offering whatever support he can to make sure Chain Reaction maintains its reputation as Australia’s “ultimate corporate cycling challenge.”
Chain Reaction CEO John Ward said the organisation was privileged to have the support of such a distinguished cycling figure.
“Phil’s profile and his credibility in the cycling world are wonderful assets for Chain Reaction,” he said. “He is known around the world not just as the Voice of Cycling but also for his tireless work for good causes and we’re lucky that Chain Reaction is one of those he has agreed to help.”
Phil told the CR riders he was keen to help in any way possible, including possibly participating in future Chain Reaction events.
“Chain Reaction is a perfect example of how cycling is harnessing its popularity to help our communities,” he said. “I wish everyone involved the best for the hard training coming up, and for the events as well.”
John Ward said Chain Reaction scored a fantastic double at the Tour, catching up with Phil Liggett and watching Chain Reaction ambassador Simon Gerrans take out the Ochre Jersey.
“Simon has been a generous supporter of our cause, most recently hosting a training weekend for us at Mt Buller.
“All of us at Chain Reaction extend our warmest congratulations to Simon and the rest of the Green Edge team and wish them all the best for the season ahead.”
Chain Reaction is grateful to Phil, and to his regular riding mates in Adelaide from the Bocelli La Squadra bunch, for their hospitality and for introducing them to Adelaide’s finest coffee at Bocelli’s in Hutt Street.
A total of 30 Victorian Chain Reaction riders have participated in physiological testing and sports science assessments offered by Deakin University through their partnership with major Chain Reaction charity partner - Eastern Health Foundation.
The riders participated in testing with individual assessments of key physiological variables such as VO2max, anaerobic threshold, maximum heart rate, peak power and efficiency, and body mass index.
By defining these parameters, each rider was provided information on their current physical health status and performance capabilities. The data will identify optimum training zones, pedalling action efficiency and provides insights into areas to improve performance.
Sport performance testing is not readily available to the general public, so the riders were eager to participate in individual assessments, reserved only for those at the elite level of sport.
Overseen by Dr Paul Gastin from Deakin’s School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, the assessment was designed to assist individuals participate in the Victorian Chain Reaction Challenge in March 2012. The results will enable each rider to increase the impact of training, aid recovery and enhance awareness of training science.
Testing will be repeated prior to the Chain Reaction ride and in the week following the conclusion of the ride to determine physical health, levels of improvement and responses to the 7 day cycling challenge.
Twenty six Chain Reaction riders headed to Mansfield in country Victoria for weekend to ride with six times Tour de France rider Simon Gerrans. Simon is one of Australia’s most successful professional cyclists and in 2009 joined an exclusive club by becoming the first Australian to win stages in all three Grand Tours (France, Italy and Spain).
Despite the forecast of thunderstorms and strong winds for the two days of the training camp, riders were able to enjoy two training rides around Mansfield with Simon. On the Saturday, the group headed out for a leisurely loop around Mansfield with Simon setting a good tempo at the front and the rest of the peloton rotating so that everyone had the opportunity to ride next to him. For the statistically minded this ride was 58 kilometres at an average speed of 31.3 km/h and 416 metres climbed.
Dinner on Saturday night was at Mansfield’s Produce Store which was a great place to relax and enjoy the local produce. After dinner, Simon provided an overview of his 2011 season including his win in the six day Tour of Denmark. Simon also spoke about his reasons for joining GreenEDGE cycling and what that means for him and Australian cycling in general.
On Sunday riders gathered at 8am for the ride to the summit of Mt Buller. Despite the low clouds the peloton set off looking forward to the challenge ahead. At the base of Mt Buller the peloton split into a slow and a fast group for the 16 kilometre climb to the top. Simon Gerrans’ record of 39 minutes was not challenged however all riders were happy with their form so early in the training program. Once at the top of the mountain the sun started to shine and everyone enjoyed a well earned coffee. After safely negotiating the descent the peloton made its way back to Mansfield to complete a 95 kilometre ride that included 1641 metres of climbing.
Thank you to Simon Gerrans for so generously giving of his time over the weekend and giving all present the opportunity to ride with a Tour de France rider.
Over 130 guests gathered at Brisbane’s Il Centro restaurant for the launch of the 2012 Chain Reaction Queensland Challenge which will see 40 cyclists ride over 1,000 kilometres from Rockhampton to Brisbane in May 2012.
Guests were entertained by three time Tour de France green jersey winner Robbie McEwen and two time Rugby World Cup winning Wallaby Tim Horan.
Robbie McEwen entertained guest with stories from his time riding in Europe and revealed some of the ‘tricks’ required to win races. Robbie also updated the audience on GreenEDGE cycling and his hopes for the team and the role that he will be playing.
Tim shared his thoughts on the Wallabies performance at the Rugby World Cup earlier this year and also spoke about his personal involvement Aunties and Uncles, a charity that Chain Reaction has supported in the past.
Georgina Lewis from Network 10 controlled proceedings perfectly and managed to control the enthusiasm of the audience. The day was rounded out with an auction for a lunch at Il Centro with Robbie McEwen and then Robbie generously signed copies of his recently launched book ‘One Way Road’ and donated the proceeds to Chain Reaction.
Phil Liggett, who is universally revered as the voice of cycling, has accepted the role of Patron of Chain Reaction’s inaugural ride in NSW which will be held in March 2012.
A Message from Phil Liggett
It is my great pleasure to accept the role of Patron of the 2012 NSW Chain Reaction Ride – the ultimate corporate cycling challenge in Australia.
Cycling is one of the great unifying, mass-participation sports in the world. It is enjoyed by toddlers out for their first wobbly ride, by weekend warriors, all the way through to the legends of the professional peloton.
But beyond the sheer pleasure that cycling brings to all of us on a personal level it also has the potential to bring communities together for the common good. Chain Reaction is one of the more outstanding examples of this in action.
From one man’s near-tragic experience with his newborn child six years ago was born an event that challenges some of Australia’s most senior corporate executives in the two ways. Firstly, to commit to and train hard for what will probably be the most physically demanding event of their lives. And secondly, to use their initiative and their networks to raise funds for a worthy cause – in this case, for research by the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute into Congenital Heart Disease which afflicts so many young Australians and their families.
I have offered to help the 2012 Chain Reaction team in any way I can – by spreading the word about the ride, by offering encouragement to riders and potential sponsors through regular messages of support posted on the Chain Reaction website to joining in a training session or two with the riders when I’m Down Under.
I am honoured to be associated with Chain Reaction and with the Victor Chang Institute and I look forward to my involvement with this great event in support of a great cause.
Olympic champion Kieran Perkins joined riders and support crew from this year’s Chain Reaction Queensland Challenge to celebrate its success. This year’s 1,000 kilometre ride from Forster on the NSW central coast to Brisbane in May raised over $605,000 for Brisbane’s Royal Children’s Hospital and the Starlight Children’s Foundation.
The Royal Children’s Hospital will use the funds provided to purchase 3 cardiac monitors for its Children’s Cancer Centre and an OCT Ultrasound Machine it’s Children’s Eye Clinic while the Starlight Children’s Foundation will use the funds provided to help run the Starlight Express Room at the Mater Children’s Hospital.
Kieran, who is a Starlight Children’s Foundation Ambassador, entertained guests with stories from his swimming career with a particular focus on the hard work and mental preparation that was required to win two Olympic gold medals. Kieran generously said that he was inspired by the Chain Reaction riders who manage to balance training, work and family commitments.
In addition, Dr Brendan Cronin from the Royal Children’s Hospital Eye Clinic gave all present an informative talk on the benefits of the OCT Ultrasound Machine and the difference that it will make in the early diagnosis and treatment of many of the conditions that effect children’s eyes.
The night was hosted by the Royal Children’s Hospital and provided riders and support crew the opportunity to re-live their journey from Forster to Brisbane and talk about how much fitter they will be for next year’s ride.
Chain Reaction, the ultimate corporate bike challenge, is pleased to announce that Tour de France cyclist Simon Gerrans has accepted an invitation to be a Chain Reaction ambassador.
Held each year, the Chain Reaction rides raise money for sick children by challenging senior executives who have a passion for cycling and an awareness of their corporate social responsibilities to ride 1,000 kilometres in seven days.
In making the announcement Chain Reaction CEO John Ward said, "Chain Reaction is extremely selective as to whom it appoints as an ambassador and Simon’s work ethic and dedication to his profession and his desire to give back to the community typifies what Chain Reaction looks for."
Since its first ride in 2007, Chain Reaction has raised over $4.4 million for its children’s charity partners.
In 2011 Chain Reaction conducted two charity ride bike rides; the first from Sydney to Melbourne for the Victorian business community which raised more than $1 million and the second from Forster on the NSW central coast to Brisbane for the Queensland business community which raised over $600,000. This year’s charity partners were the Starlight Children’s Foundation, Brisbane’s Royal Children’s Hospital and the Monash Children’s Hospital.
In 2012 Chain Reaction will conduct three charity rides for the Victorian, Queensland and New South Wales business communities.
In the final preparations for his sixth appearance in the Tour de France, Gerrans said in accepting the invitation to be a Chain Reaction ambassador, he hoped to help raise the profile and fundraising of the rides by assisting with a number of activities when he is back in Australia during his off-season.
“I’m excited about aligning myself with a group of passionate business people who support some fantastic children’s charities. In addition to helping Chain Reaction raise more money I hope my involvement will make the Chain Reaction rides more enjoyable and maybe even a little faster”.
Simon Gerrans is one of the classiest riders in the professional peloton and in 2009 he joined an exclusive cycling club by becoming the first Australian to win stages in all three Grand Tours (France, Italy and Spain). He represented Australia in the 2008 Beijing Olympics and currently rides for the British Team Sky.
Simon joins World Champion triathlete Emma Carney and Olympic swimming Champion Duncan Armstrong as Chain Reaction ambassadors.
The inaugural Chain Reaction Queensland Challenge, which took place from 8 -13 May, saw 37 cyclists ride 1,000 kilometres between Forster on the NSW central coast and Brisbane. The route took the riders up the picturesque north coast of NSW passing through towns such as Coffs Harbour, Yamba, Byron Bay and Broadbeach.
As a result of the generous support of our corporate supporters and personal donors, Chain Reaction has raised over $602,000 which is a fantastic result for the first year of this ride. These funds will be shared between our major charity partners, the Starlight Children's Foundation and Brisbane’s Royal Children’s Hospital and a number of other smaller children’s charities. Both major charity partners are exceptionally worthy causes with the Starlight Children’s Foundation delivering innovative programs that restore the fun, laughter and joy to children that serious illness takes away while the Royal Children’s Hospital will use the money to purchase an three cardiac monitors for its Children’s Cancer Centre.
Included within the 37 riders were two times world champion triathlete Emma Carney, 1995 Australian triathlete of the year Troy Fidler, 2004 Team Pursuit World Champion Ashley Hutchinson and Chain Reaction founder Berrick Wilson. Pleasingly all 37 riders who started the event arrived safely at Reddacliff Place in Brisbane to be welcome home by family and friends.
The riders were joined by at the start of their final day’s ride by Olympic Cycling Champion Sara Carrigan for the ascent up the gruelling Mt Tamborine which despite some extremely weary legs in the peleton, all riders managed to make it to the top before completing the final leg of the ride under police escort into the Brisbane CBD.
To celebrate the success of Chain Reactions first Queensland ride all riders and support crew were joined by family, friends and supporters at a Gala Dinner at the Hilton Hotel. Chain Reaction Ambassador Duncan Armstrong hosted the evening and once again did a fantastic job whilst Sara Carrigan was the guest speaker.
If you would like to see photographs and a daily summary from this year's ride please visit our blog at:
This year's Chain Reaction Victorian Challenge, which took place last week, saw 44 cyclists ride more than 1,100 kilometres between Sydney and Melbourne in 6½ days. The route took the riders over the picturesque and challenging Snowy Mountains passing through towns such as Canberra, Cabramurra which is Australia’s highest town, Myrtleford and Alexandria.
This year, through the generous support of our corporate supporters and personal donors, Chain Reaction has raised over $1,035,000 which is a Chain Reaction fundraising record. These funds will be shared between our major charity partners, the Starlight Children's Foundation and the Monash Children’s Hospital and a number of other smaller children’s charities. Both major charity partners are exceptionally worthy causes with the Starlight Children’s Foundation delivering innovative programs that restore the fun, laughter and joy to children that serious illness takes away while the Monash Children’s Hospital will use the money to purchase an MRI Incubator for its Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Apart from raising in excess of $1 million, pleasingly all 44 riders who started the event arrived safely at the Melbourne Town Hall.
If you would like to see photographs and a daily summary from this year's ride please visit our blog at:
Chain Reaction riders and sponsors gathered at the Holding Redlich office in Brisbane for the official launch of Chain Reaction’s first Queensland Challenge. This challenge, which is to be held in May, will see 36 riders cycle 1000 kilometres in 6 days from Forster on the NSW central coast to Brisbane.
Berrick Wilson, Chain Reaction’s founder, took all present through his own moving experience that lead to the founding of Chain Reaction before John Ward, Chain Reaction’s CEO, unveiled the course for this year’s ride which he assures riders will be both picturesque and enjoyable. Troy Fidler who is responsible for training all the riders and getting them to the starting line in peak physical condition emphasised the need for proper preparation both on and off the bike.
The evening was rounded out by presentations from the rides two major charity partners, the Royal Children’s Hospital and the Starlight Children’s Foundation who both informed riders and sponsors where the funds raised will be going and the impact that this will have on lives of sick children and their families.
The evening was a great success with all riders and sponsors getting the opportunity to meet each in more relaxed surrounding than on a training ride but importantly gaining a better understanding of the difference that Chain Reaction aims to make in conjunction with its charity partners.
Last Wednesday Chain Reaction riders participated in a Watt Bike Challenge at the Monash Hospital. Watt bikes are stationary bikes and a team from Chain Reaction competed against teams from Monash Heart and Southern Health (Monash Hospital). The 10 hour challenge saw 10 riders from each team ride for 50 minutes with a 10 minute change over between each rider.
The purpose of the Challenge was to raise money for Chain Reaction and also to increase awareness within the hospital that Nick Youngs, a Monash Heart technician, is riding 1,100 kilometres in this year’s Chain Reaction Challenge between Sydney and Melbourne and is looking for Monash staff to sponsor him.
Special guest appearances were made by Luke Darcy, Andrew McKay and Emma Carney who all very generously donated their time to help raise the profile of Chain Reaction and the Monash Children’s Hospital. Apart from spending time on the bike, Luke also very generously spent some time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit talking to both parents and medical staff.
The day was a great success with over $2,800 raised and the team from Chain Reaction narrowly defeating the team from Monash Heart 330 kilometres to 323 kilometres.
Chain Reaction's Queensland Organising Committee has confirmed that the Royal Children's Hospital and the Starlight Children's Foundation will be its major charity partners for its 1,000 kilometre ride in May between Forster on the NSW central coast and Brisbane.
The Royal Children's Hospital will use the money raised to purchase three cardiac monitors for its Bone Marrow Transplant Unit. These units will allow nursing staff to monitor cardiac function at a higher level than they can at the moment. A child in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit has to be in isolation for 100 days and requires special monitoring which currently can only be done in an Intensive Care Unit which can be terribly confronting. These cardiac monitors will enable staff to continue to monitor children in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit rather than moving them to Intensive Care.
The Starlight Children's Foundation will use the money raised to run their Starlight Express Room at the Mater Hospital. The Starlight Express Room is a place where Captain Starlight orchestrates their own brand of fun and mayhem, alongside the latest computer games, movies, crafts and activities. Kids too ill to leave their beds can join in the fun via the daily Captain Starlight shows broadcast to their bedside TVs. Starlight Express Rooms are also a welcome retreat for brothers and sisters wanting to escape the tedium of waiting around in hospital corridors
John Ward, Chain Reaction's CEO said in relation to the decision "It is particularly important to support organisations like the Royal Children's Hospital and the Starlight Children's Foundation at the moment because a large part of their funding for 2011 will have been directed to Queensland Flood Relief Appeals".
Last Saturday, 20 riders from Chain Reaction’s Victorian Challenge visited the Monash Hospital for a briefing from the two major charity partners on where the funds raised will be spent.
For the 2011 Chain Reaction Victorian Challenge the two major charity partners are:
- The Monash Children’s Hospital where Chain Reaction’s contribution will help them purchase an MRI Incubator, and
- The Starlight Children’s Foundation where Chain Reactions contribution will enable Starlight to run their Starlight Express Room and the Starlight Captain's ward program at the Monash Children’s Hospital for 12 months
Dr Michael Ditchfield, Head of Paediatric Diagnostic Imaging, presented to the riders on the advantages of having an MRI Incubator and how it would provide doctors with invaluable information that will allow them to provide the best possible course of treatment for premature babies and also keep the families fully informed as to what is happening with their child. Equally as important is the fact that an MRI Incubator allows the safe transport and high quality scanning of premature babies without the need to disconnect these babies from their vital life support systems. This means that some babies who would have been considered too high a risk to disconnect from their life support systems will now be able to have an MRI.
Dr Alex Veldman, Neonatal Paediatrician Monash Newborn, then took the riders on a tour of the Monash Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) so that riders could see firsthand those babies that will benefit from the MRI Incubator. Currently Australia only has one MRI incubator, which is in Brisbane, and Dr Veldman and all the staff at Monash NICU are very excited about having Australia’s second MRI Incubator. Dr Veldman also showed the riders the Echocardiograph machine that Chain Reaction purchased for the Monash NICU in 2008 and said the he had "... saved the lives of at least 12 babies thanks to this machine".
Captain Rainbow, one of the Starlight Children’s Foundation’s enthusiastic Captains then took the riders to the Starlight Express Room and explained to riders that Starlight’s sole purpose is to bring smiles to sick children by distracting them from their illness and pain using entertainment and engagement. The Starlight Express Room is a place where Captain Starlight orchestrates their own brand of fun and mayhem, alongside the latest computer games, movies, crafts and activities. Kids too ill to leave their beds can join in the fun via mobile games stations. Starlight Express Rooms are also a welcome retreat for brothers and sisters wanting to escape the tedium of waiting around in hospital corridors.
All Chain Reaction riders left the hospital feeling much more informed about the two major charity partners for the 2011 Victorian Challenge but more importantly much more motivated with their fundraising efforts knowing that they can make a difference with the treatment and recovery of hospitalised children.
Australian Pro-cyclist Simon Gerrans entertained more than 50 guests at a Chain Reaction Business Leaders Lunch in Melbourne.
Simon is best known for his stage victories in all three Grand Tours (France, Italy and Spain), his top 10 finishes in the European Spring Classics and representing Australia at the Olympics, Commonwealth Games and World Championships.
Simon's presentation gave the audience a true appreciation for the life of a professional cyclist and he spoke about the highs and lows of his 2010 season and compared it to the GFC and its impact on many in the room. Simon low points included crashing three days straight in the Tour de France and ultimately have to withdraw with a broken elbow and a battered and bruised body. Despite this and many other setbacks Simon still managed to finish the season on a high by representing Australia at the World Championships in Geelong and helping Australia achieve a third place in the men’s road race.
The lunch was hosted by Investec Bank one of Chain Reaction’s major supporters and guest were drawn from the Chain Reaction community as well as representatives from other major Chain Reaction supporters, Caramel Creative, Goldman Sachs, ISPT, KordaMentha, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Westfield.
Chain Reaction founder Berrick Wilson and CEO John Ward attended the official opening of the ‘new wing’ of the Cerebral Palsy Education Centre (CPEC) which was officially opened by Maxine Morand MP, Minister for Children and Early Childhood Development on 28 October 2010.
The construction of this ‘new wing’ was funded from the proceeds of the 2009 Chain Reaction Challenge around Tasmania. CPEC was one of the major charity partners for this ride and received a donation of $215,000 which contributed significantly towards the Education and Training extension. After the 2010 Chain Reaction Challenge between Port Macquarie and Noosa, Chain Reaction contributed an additional $100,000 to fund the fit out of the Education and Training extension.
The opening of the Education and Training extension has delivered a promise of hope and opportunity to every child in the world who is diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Their teachers, therapist and parents will now be able to access the education & training courses presented by the internationally acknowledged CPEC therapy staff from this new building.
As Garry Prigg, CEO of CPEC, said at the opening "If it were not for Chain Reaction the building extension would not exist today".
Pictured Left: John Ward - Chain Reaction CEO, Maxine Morand MP, Claire Cotter - CPEC Founder, Garry Prigg - CPEC CEO and Berrick Wilson - Chain Reaction Founder at the official opening of the Cerebral Palsy Education and Training Centre extension.
Chain Reaction’s Chairman and Founder, Berrick Wilson, today presented a cheque for $200,000 to John Bertrand, Chairman of The Alannah and Madeline Foundation. The cheque represented part of the funds raised from Chain Reaction’s 2010 ride where 42 riders rode 1,000 kilometres between Port Macquarie and Noosa and raised over $875,000 for children’s charities. In presenting the cheque, Berrick said “Chain Reaction is pleased to partner with organisation such as The Alannah and Madeline Foundation and to assist them in the implementation of their Better Buddies program.”
The event was attended by Chain Reaction riders and representatives from its major supports, Goldman Sachs and Partners, Investec Bank, ISPT, KordaMentha, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Arnold Bloch Leibler.
On Tuesday August 24, the Starlight Children's Foundation honoured Chain Reaction riders for their fundraising efforts that will keep the Monash Starlight Express Room doors open for 12 months and also send Starlight Captains into the wards.
42 senior executives came together in the fourth annual Chain Reaction charity bike ride in March this year to raise over $300,000 for Starlight – enough funding for the foundation to operate the Starlight Express Room at Monash Medical Centre for 12 months. It also increases the frequency of Captain Starlight visits to Monash Medical Centre's outpatient's facilities including the Children's Cancer Centre and Adolescent Mental Health Centre. The unveiling of the Chain Reaction commemorative plaque at the Monash Starlight Express Room will be attended by executive riders from across Melbourne including Chairman Berrick Wilson, CEO John Ward and Ambassador Emma Carney along with rider representatives from Arnold Bloch Leibler, Goldman Sachs & Partners Australia, Investec, ISPT and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Chain Reaction, which has raised over $2.75 million dollars since its first ride in 2007, has grown to be a key funding partner for children's charities and with the appointment of new CEO John Ward they will continue to support children's charities long into the future.
After much in-depth discussion the Melbourne Organising Committee has selected Sydney to Melbourne as the route for its 2011 ride.
This route was chosen because:
- It will be the 5th Chain Reaction ride for the Melbourne business community and riding between the two largest cities in Australia is a great way to celebrate the occasion, and
- Riding over the Snowy Mountains will be a challenge in itself however we are all hoping the picturesque scenery and a significant amount of training will be sufficient to get the riders through.
Details of the route are still being finalised however at this stage the proposed route see riders leaving Sydney via Wollongong before arriving in Moss Vale. From Moss Vale the peleton will travel south to Jindabyne via Queanbeyan and Cooma. From Jindabyne the fun begins as riders start to climb the Snowy Mountains to Thredbo and Tom Groggin before the descent to Khancoban. From Khancoban there's more climbing as the riders make their way to Bright before finally returning to Melbourne via Mansfield. The ride will start in Sydney on Saturday 12th March and conclude in Melbourne on Friday 18th March.
Chain Reaction Founder and Chairman, Berrick Wilson, announced the appointment of John Ward to the position of CEO of the Chain Reaction Challenge Foundation. John has been a Board member for three years and now takes on the full-time role as CEO as we enter our 5th year of the event.
The Chain Reaction Challenge Foundation started in 2007 with its first event being a ride from Adelaide to Melbourne in which it raised $475,000 for Children's charities. In four years we have raised $2.75 million and in addition to providing much needed support to our major charity partner the Starlight Children's Foundation we have also:
- Purchased a new newborn emergency transport ambulance which you'll now see on the roads with Chain Reaction branding,
- Purchased a new echocardiography machine for Monash Newborn Intensive Care Unit,
- Funded the extension and fit-out of the Cerebral Palsy Education Centre in Glen Waverley,
- Funded the implementation of the Alannah and Madeline Better Buddies anti-bullying program in 100 new schools.