Home' Air Force News : November 26th 2009 Contents 27
AIR FORCE November 26, 2009
By John Martin
GPCAPT Ian Farnsworth jokes
that this may be the last photo of him
That's because he is about to
embark on three gruelling days
on his bike riding from Canberra to
Charlottes Pass and back -- 454km,
much of it uphill.
It's for a good cause though.
GPCAPT Farnsworth is one of
the riders participating in the Hartley
Lifecare Ability Cycle Challenge to
raise money for Hartley Lifecare.
Hartley Lifecare is a Canberra-
based organisation that has provided
accommodation support and respite
care to children and adults in the ACT
with physical and complex disabilities
for nearly 50 years -- and the Defence
contingent has already raised about
$19,000 through a variety of fundrais-
ing this year.
GPCAPT Farnsworth, who joined
some of his colleagues for a publicity
photo at Parliament House, has only
been cycling for about a year after
breaking his foot in the City to Surf,
forcing him to take up a new sporting
He has never cycled this far before
in one go. "I just ride to work, and
that's 14km," he said.
Although the event has become
much wider than a Defence event and
is now the largest single fundraising
event of its type in the ACT, with thou-
sands of cyclists participating, it began
in 1999 when a team of Air Force
cyclists rode from Sydney to Canberra.
To celebrate the 10th anniversa-
ry this year, a team of Defence riders
are riding from Sydney to Canberra
on November 25 and 26. On Friday,
November 27, the first wave of rid-
ers leave on the Hartley proper. The
Defence Team then leaves on Saturday,
November 28, with the second wave of
IT WAS a race within a race.
Among the 2500 contestants in the
Australian 24-hour mountain bike
championship in Canberra was a
team from 37SQN.
The team of six travelled from
RAAF Base Richmond on Friday,
October 9 and set up camp right next
to their inter-service friendly rivals
from HMAS Albatross.
CPL Michael Crummy, of 37SQN,
one of the riders but also part of the
logistics team, said the challenge gave
members an opportunity to develop
outdoor skills like pitching tents and
"It also gave them an opportunity to
develop their teamwork and group cohe-
sion whist undertaking a massive physi-
cal and mental challenge," he said.
The other members of the team
were SGT Andrew Coppleman,
37SQN (logistics); LAC Allan
Dawson, 37SQN (rider); LACW
Belinda Althaus, 37SQN (rider);
FLTLT Shane Taylor has qualified
for next year's World Solo 24-Hour
mountain bike championship in Can-
He will return on October 9 to
Stromlo Forest Park, the scene of this
year's Scott 24-hour championships,
which attracted riders from all over
Australia last month.
In a case of déjà vu, FLTLT Taylor
finished fourth -- the same result he
achieved in 2008 -- finishing with 22
laps and qualifying for the 2010 world
THE ARMY White Water
Association will be conducting
Exercise Tasman Advance, a sea
kayaking skills development and
expedition adventurous training
activity, in south-east Tasmania
from January 4-15. Expressions
of interest can be submitted to
In fine touch
SYDNEY Metro won the open
men's section of the Australian
Defence Touch Championships at
RAAF Williams last month.
North Queensland won the
women's open and went through
undefeated to be adjudged the
Champion Constituent Body team
at the titles.
The men's over 30s was won by
South Queensland and the men's
over 40s by ACT/NSW Country.
HEARTFELT FOR HARTLEY:
Left, GPCAPT Ian Farnsworth,
SQNLDR Mark Wilkins, CAPT
Simon O'Brien (Navy), WGCDR
Michael Warby, SQNLDR Greg
Foord and FLTLT Maurice
Bassaletti at Parliament House,
and above, hitting the road.
Photos: LAC Aaron Curran
For more information on Defence
mountain biking, visit www.adfcc.
Race within a race for 37SQN riders
Wheels roll for charity
Although the teams were made
up of representatives from all
three services, Air Force picked
up a personal honour when SGT
Chris Bradley (ACT/NSW Country)
was named the over-40s player of
ARMY might have won the fashion
stakes with their bright red cheq-
uered trousers, but it was the APS
team that kept Air Force from win-
ning the 2009 ACT inter-service golf
competition at Mollymook Hilltop
course, from October 19-23.
That was a bit of a surprise
because Army had won the title in
This year the event had the inclu-
sion of two teams of two-man
ambrose for each day of the com-
petition, with eight single matches.
The ambrose matches were worth 1.5
each and the single matches worth 7.5
points. A total of 10.5 points were up
for grabs for each team.
When the Army players turned up
on day one in their eye-catching
uniform, it looked like they meant
business. But it was not to be. They
fell to Air Force in the first round,
6.5 to 4.
The battle for first and second
came down to the final round when
Air Force played APS.
There were some matches that had
big wins for both teams but the APS
took the lead in a number of matches
which the Air Force could not haul
back, with many of the games ended
on the 17th or 18th holes -- the APS
won 7.5 to 3 to take the title.
Army finished third and Navy
If you have any sports news
we can consider for Air Force
News, don't forget to keep
us informed. Email john.
AB Tracey Knight, 816SQN HMAS
Albatross (support crew/reserve rider);
and OCDT Vanessa Goddard, RMC
Once the tents were up, attention
turned to preparing for the race, a
familiarisation ride and fine-tuning
the bikes. The race started at noon on
Saturday, October 10 with a Le Mans-
The first rider for the Air Force
team -- who dubbed themselves Raging
Bull Racing -- was LAC Dawson, who
had to run 400m and find his bike
among all the others.
HMAS Albatross, going by the
name Powered by Freddo got off to
the better start and led by 15 minutes
after the first four hours.
But, thanks to some swift transi-
tioning, Raging Bull Racing took the
Then disaster struck when Raging
Bull Racing received three pinched
tube flats on one lap.
Freddo's lead was kept at a half an
hour throughout the night.
A dawn lap saw LACW Althaus,
the Australian Defence Cycling Club
Road Champion, complete over 80km.
Some fast laps over the last few
hours showed what physical fortitude
the team still possessed and Raging
Bull Racing clawed back almost 20
minutes between the teams. On com-
pletion of the final lap, well past the
24th hour, Raging Bull Racing had
tallied up 19 laps, completing around
"Albatross did better than us, but
only just," CPL Crummy said.
"All members involved are keen
to ride again in a similar event to win
back the Albatross v 37SQN Mountain
bike Teams Challenge Trophy."
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