FOUR years ago Ken Roots watched the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter transport an 18-year-old rider to Lismore Base Hospital after he was involved in a serious bike accident at Kyogle.
On Sunday, the president of the Maclean Dirt Bike Club kept a watchful eye on 220 competitors as they toughed it out in the final leg of the Northern NSW Challenge.
Their aim - to raise as many dollars as they could in support of an invaluable local service which Mr Roots witnessed in action in 2008.
"The Northern NSW Challenge is an annual event, organised by the South Grafton Ex-Servicemen's Motorcycle Club, the Inverell Motorcycle Club and the Maclean Dirt Bike Club to raise funds for the rescue helicopter," he said.
"The riders donated $5 from their entry fees, people at the gate at the Maclean Dirt Bike Club collected donations on the weekend and spectators also made contributions.
"The whole motorcycle community and our local residents support the service because we never know when we may need it ourselves."
Mr Roots said the Northern NSW Challenge raised over $3000 for the rescue helicopter.
He said all three clubs had agreed to host the event again in 2012 and would aim to break through the $3000 barrier next time.