Love of cycling keeps Glenn on track

ACCOMPLISHED racer Glenn Druery will add a touch of class to tomorrow's ROMAC Ride For A Smile in Coffs Harbour.

Glenn has twice completed the world's toughest bike race, the Race Across America, where competitors ride more than 5000km and climb dizzying heights.

He's equally at home on recumbent bikes and uprights, and his racing experience covers Australia, Europe and the United States.

Glenn has also succeeded in duathlon, triathlon and ocean swim racing and to top it off, he's been part of the Australian water ski racing team.

But cycling is his main love, and that's the reason he's happy to line-up for Ride For A Smile, a 500km 24-hour endurance event at the Toormina velodrome.

The event, which starts at 10am Saturday, will raise funds for Rotary Oceania Medical Aid For Children, which brings kids from developing countries to Australia for life-saving and dignity-restoring surgery.

It takes a special person to tackle ultra cycling, and it's not surprising to find they've already tackled an ultra life event.

For Glenn, it was bowel disease. Initially, he was wrongly diagnosed with bowel cancer.

“I was told by the surgeon to 'get yourself right with everyone',” he

said.

“It was a shattering moment and one I will never forget. I was expected to die.

“Finally they discovered I had diverticulitis and I had two-thirds of my large bowel removed.

“I was so happy to find myself alive that I ate and drank and enjoyed the good life way too much.

“What followed were years of obesity.

“I reached nearly 100kg and realised that my next brush with death would likely be a heart attack and so I started riding the kids to school.

“I rediscovered my love of cycling and fitness and started riding the 180km to see my parents.

“Who knew that only six years on I'd be competing in The Race Across America, but somewhere within I found the motivation to keep going and to beat the odds.”

Ride For A Smile will have plenty of activities and entertainment for spectators.

For more information, visit www.romac.org.au/news/coffs.



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