Bike to suit all types

IF THERE is one group of people proving age, size and shape is no barrier to getting out there and doing want you want, it’s the Australian Bike Friday Club.

Almost 100 members of the club are currently exploring the cycleways and back roads of the Grafton area for their annual ride event.

Bike Fridays are a type of bicycle designed to fold down to the size of a suitcase, and each year enthusiasts from the club converge on a town in one of the Eastern states to hold a get-together ride – Grafton was the destination chosen this year.

Club founder Margaret Day, who arrived in Grafton with the rest of the riders earlier in the week, said this year marked the 15th anniversary of the event.

“We move between South Australia, New South Wales and Victoria, so we go around those three states and every year in autumn, March or April, we have anything between 100 and 130 riders congregate – I think we’ve got about 98 this time,” Ms Day said.

“We have people from all states come along. This happens every year and it’s just a whole heap of fun.”

It wasn’t just Australian riders either, Ms Day said several riders from Canadian and American Bike Friday Club chapters were also joining them this year.

Ms Day said the range of riders for this tour was fantastic and it was particularly special to have a number of blind riders joining them.

“We have several riders who are blind and they ride on the back of a tandem because the company which makes these bikes called Bike Friday also make beautiful tandems as well,” she said.

“It’s marvellous. The blind people can get all the exercise, the fun, the freedom, the excitement, the thrill – all of the things that we love about riding these bicycles.

“There are lots of people of all shapes, sizes and ages, from children to 80 year olds. We’ve got a nine-year-old boy, he’s the youngest, and we’ve got a couple of people in their 80s too.”

Using the Gateway Village Holiday Park in Grafton as a base, Ms Day said each morning the riders set off to explore another one of the “beautiful areas around Grafton”.

She said a trip to Ulmarra on Wednesday along the back roads had been a particular highlight for the riders.

The club will be touring the region until Sunday and Ms Day is encouraging anyone who sees them to stop and say g’day.

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