History of D9790 Ride to Conference

Ride to Conference in District 9790 was the inspiration of Corowa Rotarian Graham Brown, who had seen similar events in neighbouring Rotary Districts and was sure a like event could take place in D9790.

To research how the event was run and discern the necessary organisation required, Graham took part in three Rides to Conference with D9800 in 2003, 2005 and 2008.

The Inaugural D9790 RTC took place in 2009 – Shepparton to Geelong with a team of 8. There were 7 cyclists and 1 road support representing three Rotary Clubs – Diamond Creek, East Shepparton and Corowa.  The team cycled 450 km and raised $5,000 for Polio Plus and $600 for the Bushfire Appeal.

Since then the team has grown in number, the distances increased and the amounts raised increased. In 2015, the team comprised 31 participants from 14 Rotary Clubs and raised $16,500 for ARH. When one of the original cyclists had knee troubles, she continued to participate in the event by swimming laps at local pools. In 2015 she swam 51 km in the 6 days – a wonderful achievement!

Polio Plus was the Team’s charity for the first 5 rides, and monies raised went to ARH for the 2014 and 2015 rides. The riders also committed to the provision of $2,500 each year for three years (2014–16) to ARH providing a tertiary scholarship for an indigenous medical student. Student Anne-Maree Nielson has now graduated and the team is looking forward to supporting our new indigenous medical student Kate Postans over the next three years, In total so far, the team has raised $73,000 for Polio Plus and $ 65,000 for Australian Rotary Health.

Ride to Conference is an official project of the Rotary Club of Corowa although some aspects of the ride (Road Captain, clothing orders, publicity, equipment, food purchases, route mapping and accommodation booking) have been organised by regular ride participants.

The RTC team is now a part of Conference culture. Riders are received by the DG at the Thursday Sports Day afternoon tea. Sometimes the DG is able to cycle with us for a few minutes or a day or two. PDG John Gatt, along with cyclist / swimmer wife Eileen, has been with us from the beginning. PDG Phil Clancy is also one of our regular cyclists. It is of interest to note that over the years, several of the RTC team have been awarded the Sportsperson (Male) or Sportsperson (Female) trophy of the year at the Sports Night Dinner.

While the numbers may increase and the routes, monies raised and involvement of members change, the matter of paramount importance – to Coordinator Graham’s thoughts – is preserving the Rotary ethos and maintaining Rotary fellowship and friendship.


D9790 Ride to Conference Fundraising Summary

Charity - Polio Plus

2009 - The Inaugural RTC Shepparton to Geelong 3 Clubs

7 Riders

1 Support

450 km $5,000
2010 - Riding to End Polio Geelong to Albury 7 Clubs

13 Riders

1 Support

1 Swimmer

540 km $22,000
2011 - Riding to End Polio

Albury to Wangaratta

'The Long Way Round'

12 Clubs

19 Riders

2 Support

1 Swimmer

580 km $20,000
 2012 - The 'Hot to Trot' RTC Wangaratta to Moonee Valley 9 Clubs

19 Riders

2 Support

1 Swimmer

586 km  $19,000
2013 - 'Discover the Golden Beaches' RTC Ballarat to Ballarat 5 Clubs

10 Riders

2 Support

600 km $7,000



Charity - Australian Rotary Health

2014 - The 'Hardly a Hill' RTC Shepparton to Shepparton 12 Clubs

20 Riders

3 Support

1 Swimmer

650 km $15,000
2015 - The 'Hill or Two' RTC Wangaratta to Wangaratta 14 Clubs

27 Riders

3 Support

1 Swimmer

656 km $16,000
2016 - The 'Mallee Meander' RTC Bendigo to Bendigo 12 Clubs

22 Riders

4 support

660 km $21,000
2017 - The 'Strathbogie Saunter' RTC Shepparton to Shepparton  14 Clubs

 29 Riders

4 support

 580 km  $13,000
TOTAL raised over 9 years of RTC   $138,000