Rhinos stampede up to the Gold Coast

IT'S not a long way to travel to the Gold Coast's Skilled Stadium from the Clarence Valley.

It is however when the only mode of transport for the trip is your own two feet.

Grafton Rhinos players will swap their football boots for jogging shoes and run across Northern NSW and into Queensland for the club's inaugural Rhino Stampede in March.

Players, along with club officials, supporters and the general public, will set off from Grafton on March 23 and will run for four days reaching Skilled Stadium on March 27.

The relay-style fun run aims to raise funds for both the club and the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter, with runners seeking sponsorship for the close to 400 kilometre event.

Rhinos president Tony Hourigan said he hoped the stampede could entice a great number of people to join the charge north.

“I'm hoping we can get as many people as we can...players, supporters, rugby league enthusiasts,” he said.

“We'll be running through a lot of towns with league clubs in them. Clubs can join us or do their own fundraiser. I would like to get the whole Group involved.”

Hourigan said the stampede would 'lift the profile' of rugby league in the region and hoped the community would support the fundraiser and the club.

“League in the bush is struggling at the moment,” he said.

“We rely on volunteers and we need a lot of volunteers.”

Stampede organiser Lyn Diskon hoped Clarence Valley Council and other local councils along the route would involve themselves in the 'community building' event.

“Hopefully our mayor will be involved...I've had support from Casino and I've been in contact with the mayor of Lismore,” she said.

“I'm hoping for support from the whole Northern Rivers community. It should be quite a spectacle.”

Three to five runners will run legs of two kilometres at a time, with the public able to sponsor individual runners or the club as a whole.

“It's about 366 kilometres to Skilled Stadium...so 10 cents a kilometre is $36,” Ms Diskon said.

For more information, contact Tony Hourigan on 0409 226 096 or Pat Swift on 0427 794 389.

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