Up to 3000 bike riders will descend on Pomonal, Moyston and Willaura later this year when they take part in the 2020 Great Vic Bike Ride, with planning for the annual event continuing despite coronavirus restrictions.
During the ride, in November and December, the riders will stop at Willaura for lunch before travelling to Pomonal where they will camp for the night. The next day riders will continue their journey stopping in Moyston on their way to Great Western.
Ride organiser Bicycle Network are continuing planning for the event hopeful that virus restrictions will be lifted in time with the aim of holding the event to help people recover.
Ararat Rural City Council CEO Dr Tim Harrison said the ride brings huge economic benefits to the towns it travels through with statistics revealing riders spend an average of $35 per day in the towns through which they travel.
Dr Harrison said the Council was excited to be hosting the ride this year, and said the communities of Pomonal, Willaura and Moyston had a great opportunity to take advantage of the influx of visitors.
“Local community and sporting groups could use the opportunity as a fundraiser through food and drink stalls, and businesses may want to offer special deals to riders,” he said.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity to get in the spirit of the ride and provide local hospitality to the riders, who are potential return visitors to the region.”
The Great Vic Bike Ride is a rolling cycling and camping holiday where participants ride from town to town over 10 days, set up a campsite at the end of each riding day and explore a new area.
Bicycle Network General Manager of Events Rebecca Lane said the organisation was committed to holding the event to give back to local communities and Australians who have had a tough start to 2020.
“It’s been a tricky start to 2020 but we really want to help people have a nice end of the year, whether that’s riding the Great Vic or benefitting from the event coming to town,” Ms Lane said.
“The effects of coronavirus and summer bushfires have given Victoria and regional communities a financial hit. We’re hopeful that virus restrictions will be lifted in time and we can hold an event to help people recover.”
To help communities plan and prepare for the event, Bicycle Network is aiming to hold public meetings in July where people can get information about when and where the event will be visiting and what they can offer.
Great Vic Bike Ride public meetings are usually held face-to-face in towns the event visits. Bicycle Network will aim to do this in 2020, but other plans may be made depending on coronavirus restrictions.
The 2020 Great Vic Bike Ride spends its first night in Rainbow on Saturday 28 November then visits Brim, Horsham (two nights), Halls Gap (two nights), Dunkeld and Pomonal before finishing in Great Western on Sunday 6 December.
Local community groups wishing to take part by providing riders with goods and services can now register expressions of interest with Bicycle Victoria through these links:
- Web form – https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/37CZLS6
- Downloadable PDF form – https://s23705.pcdn.co/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Application-form-for-Community-Group-Involvement_v3.pdf