Cycling commentator Matthew Keenan has good reason to support the good work of the Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute.
(min cost $8)
Login or signup to continue reading
His family has been hit by one type alone.
“I lost my mother to breast cancer, my aunty had breast cancer and passed away as well, and my sister has had it,” he said.
Mr Keenan said the resources available to his sister – who he described as now being “fighting fit and in the clear” – had made a big difference in her survival, showing what kind of impact constant cancer research had on patients.
I lost my mother to breast cancer, my aunty had breast cancer...and my sister had it.- Matthew Keenan, Cycle Classic ambassador
The rider turned grand tour caller, for SBS in Australia but also on other English-speaking TV networks, is an ambassador for the Cycle Classic Ballarat, which is only a month away.
The event will see cyclists of all shapes and sizes tackle parts of the Road Nationals course, as well as a mountain bike event and walk around Lake Wendouree.
Mr Keenan said his family’s experiences with cancer had shown why people should support FECRI through the Cycle Classic.
“With greater information, people are better empowered,” he said.
“Hopefully we’re giving the scientists enough money to do this.”
He said the fact the region had a world-class research centre was something worth celebrating.
“A city like Ballarat, to be able to provide such important research in something that is global, is fantastic.
While the event is fast approaching, Mr Keenan said even those without the kilometres in their legs could take part.
“(If you don’t have that fitness) just get started on the short ride,” he said.
“ If you’re the classic MAMIL (middle-aged man in lycra) go for the one of the middle,” he said.
“It’s a good experience, then set yourself a target of the longer ride next year.”
The Cycle Classic, now in its ninth year, finds itself one of several major cycling fundraisers.
Mr Keenan said it was a great thing for the sport.
“It’s been one of the best things to happen to cycling,” he said.
“Cycling is the go-to sport for fundraising events. There’s the Tour de Cure, Drew Ginn recently did the 24-hour record for it, Steve Waugh, a former captain of the Australian cricket team, decides not not to do a cricket match and did a charity bike ride.”
“It’s part of the growth of the sport.”
Entries will be open almost to the day of the Cycle Classic.
This year, however, it will stretch on for almost the whole weekend.
The Ride24Research will start at 7pm on Friday, February 19, and run until 7pm the next day.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.