Collins prepares to cycle around country

Jonathan Collins from Wentworth Falls will be cycling around Australia to raise funds for the McGrath Foundation.

Jonathan Collins from Wentworth Falls will be cycling around Australia to raise funds for the McGrath Foundation.

The motto scribbled on the frame of his bike says "Dream big, pedal hard" and Jonathan Collins from Wentworth Falls hopes it's inspiration enough to keep him going on an epic adventure.

The 24-year-old builder from Wentworth Falls will spend almost 100 days riding his Specialized bicycle 13,700 kilometres around Australia.

Averaging about 175 km a day, the ex-Grammar student has grand plans to raise up to $250,000 for the McGrath Foundation, riding into the Sydney Cricket Ground for the Sydney Test on Jane McGrath Day (January 5, 2015) to hand over that rather large cheque.

Towns like Talem Bend, Tennant Creek, Kununurra and Mt Isa are all on his itinerary, and the self confessed cricket tragic will also take in the hallowed Melbourne Cricket Ground and Adelaide Oval.

His brother, Jake, 20, will drive the ute with a caravan attached, as his support vehicle, carrying extra wheels, chains and cassettes.

A keen opening batsman, who represented both his school and his region in cricket and for some years afterwards, Mr Collins says he's a fan of the McGraths and the work done by the Foundation.

"There's no personal connection. But ever since I was about 10, I've always admired him and when he and Jane started the Foundation I always had the passion for it and loved what he stood for."

Blue Mountains Grammar School has got behind the project and will hold a Pink Day this month to officially launch Mr Collins's trip.

"I asked the deputy head to do a fundraiser and they have got right behind me - there will be a jumping castle, fairy floss, a band and the whole school is dressing up in pink."

In the lead-up he's been averaging 400kms a week in cycling and will work up to adding another 50 kms before he sets off in October.

Apart from a slightly uncomfortable saddle, he has no real concerns about the trip.

"The only bit I'm really worried about is the Nullabor with the road trains, but Jake will be behind me in the support vehicle," he said.

The McGrath Foundation funds more than 90 McGrath nurses in communities across Australia. The Collins brothers will meet with some of these nurses as they travel around the country. The Foundation has helped over 25,000 families experiencing breast cancer, by providing physical, psychological and emotional support from the time of diagnosis and throughout treatment. The free support can be accessed through self referral.

McGrath spokeswoman Aimee Jerogin said Jonathan was vital to the Foundation's work.

"The Foundation is very supportive of Jonathan's quest to ride around Australia helping raise funds for the Foundation but also spreading the breast care awareness message around the country and stopping in and meeting our nurses along the way."

"We couldn't do what we do at the Foundation without the support of community fundraisers like Jonathan," Ms Jerogin said.

Mr Collins already has sponsors from the school and wider community, as well as Bikeminded in Wentworth Falls and the Sydney RV Group.

The Blue Mountains Grammar School Goes Pink day will be on June 18, when a McGrath Foundation representative will also visit to launch the event.

For details about the school's event contact acranna@bmgs.nsw.edu.au and to sponsor Jonathan Collins go to www.tourdnation-com.webs.com

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop