Overcoming intense physical and mental challenges, two members of the Ironfish Adelaide team have recently completed an epic 709km bike ride for charity, raising over $25,000.
The journey from Port Adelaide to the Northern Flinders Ranges took five days, with riders Julian Stevens and Mike Lawton covering approximately 135km a day. Their efforts were in aid of Operation Flinders Foundation, an organisation which supports at-risk youth by offering a life-changing eight-day adventure program trekking through the far northern Flinders Range.
“We’re extremely proud of Julian and Mike for their great efforts in fundraising for Operation Flinders through participation in the Epic Bike Ride. We’re delighted to be a sponsor for the not for profit organisation that positively impacts the lives of young Australians at risk,” said Ironfish Adelaide Managing Director, Damon Nagel. “We have a shared mission to help people succeed in life and achieve their goals. Our mission at Ironfish is to help people enjoy a better life and more secure future – so we see our core values as absolutely in alignment with Operation Flinders.”
Ironfish’s support of the Epic Impact Bike Ride and Corporate Cycling Challenge forms part of the company’s ongoing commitment to corporate social responsibility and wellbeing along with contributing to our local communities. In addition to corporate level sponsorship of the event, Ironfish staff across Australia personally rallied behind Julian and Michael in their many fundraising efforts, which included a quiz night, silent auction and a breakfast with sporting celebrities.
The Epic Impact Bike Ride ran from 8-14 May 2017, starting at the Operation Flinders Foundation head office in Port Adelaide and traversing all the way to the charity’s base camp at Yankaninna Station in the Northern Flinders Ranges, where the organisation runs the youth adventure program.
“It was great to get to the station and experience first-hand the professionalism of Operation Flinders staff in supporting youth on the program,” said Ironfish Senior Property Partner, Julian Stevens.
“Our last day was arduous; it started at 7am and finished at 6:30pm in the dark, with the last 15km of the journey navigating a dirt path. I think we covered 160km that day. It was such a relief to get to the finish line and be welcomed by cheering staff,” he said.
The challenge cultivated a great spirit of camaraderie amongst all the riders, especially on day four, crossing hilly terrain towards Blinman, where riders rode back down from the peak to rally around and support one of the riders on his ascent. Along the way, the riders also had the opportunity to meet some of the kids who would benefit from their fundraising efforts and go on to complete the eight-day Operation Flinders program. Other highlights included riding a leg of the journey with Australian cricketer, Wayne ‘Flipper’ Philips on day two.
‘’It was a fantastic experience to share some time with a group of professional people and see an area of Australia that most people don’t get to see. Being followed by the coat of arms – kangaroos, emus and other native fauna – along much of the journey, was truly memorable,” said Stevens.
Overall, the Epic Impact Bike Ride participants raised over $110,000 for Operation Flinders.
“There was a tremendous sense of achievement for all the riders. It’s a real effort of endurance – you don’t know what it’s like until you’ve done it,” Stevens said.
Watch a short 2 minute film about last year’s ride – URL https://youtu.be/si6DVOg6uD4
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