EF Education First Pro Cycling Team rider Simon Clarke is gearing up to return to the Great Vic Bike Ride in 2019, fresh off the back of a Eurpoean summer that included riding the Tour de France.
Clarke will visit the Great Vic on the rest day at Port Fairy and then ride with a school group on Thursday 28 November from Port Fairy to Peterborough.
Clarke’s riding potential was discovered on the Great Vic in 1998 when he rode with a school group as part of the nine-day riding and camping adventure.
As a student at Selby Primary School in Melbourne’s Dandenong Ranges, Clarke had the opportunity to ride with Dean Woods (Olympic track racing gold medallist) who recognised his talent.
“The group I was riding with consisted of students from high school in Year 9 and 10 – and then there was me who was still in primary school,” Clarke said.
“By the time we were about half way into the day’s ride the rest of the school students had fallen behind and it was only Dean and I left”.
“He noticed that I was going well and that I was a lot younger than the other students so he recommended I join a club and start racing.”
The rest, Clarke says, is history.
This year, Clarke will be the one riding with students at the Great Victorian Bike Ride, imparting his knowledge and skills on the bike. He'll ride with the school that exemplifies the Great Vic spirit of camaraderie, teamwork and respect.
“I’m really excited to be riding for a day with the students – it’ll be a little like back to the future!” Clarke said.
When Clarke last visited the Great Vic in 2016 he rode with Fitzroy High School from Apollo Bay to Bellbrae, giving students a memory they will never forget.
2019 has been a big year for Simon with a second in the classic Amstel Gold Race, his fifth Tour de France, top ten finishes in the Strade Bianche, Tirreni-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo and the birth of Stella, his and wife Mara’s first child.
Want to join Simon at the Great Vic? Enter now with our last chance offer!
The Great Vic Bike Ride is kicking off in Robe next week, but it's not too late to get a last chance entry and save $100!
Tickets are still available for all ride options. However, if you need a little bit of extra time to get organised you can join us on the second half and ride five days from Port Fairy to Torquay. Is there a better way to bring in summer?
Entries are available at greatvic.com.au. Use the code LASTCHANCE at the checkout to save $100.
— Simon Clarke (@SimoClarke) December 2, 2016