Hawaiian Ride For Youth 2021 – Welcome home Team MACA!

Last week, MACA’s Ride for Youth team participated in a 700km ride to raise vital funds for Youth Focus, a leading not-for-profit organisation that delivers innovative and accessible mental health services to help at risk young people across WA.

On Saturday 27 March, riders received a well-deserved warm welcome home by family and friends as they returned from their Albany to Perth ride and crossed the finish line at UWA Riley Oval.

Martin Pratt, Ben Williams, Chris Pearson, Brad Miller, Mark Lynn and Peter Marcakis rode for Team MACA and did us proud.

Team MACA raised an impressive $146,694 for Youth Focus!

Chris Pearson and Martin Pratt spoke on behalf of the team, giving us insight in their inspirational journey.

How are you feeling post ride?

“I’m so proud of the contribution Team MACA has made over the past years and the recognition the team receives across the RFY community regarding our fundraising capacity and our reliability during the ride week.

Physically I am a bit tired from such a full-on week, but I couldn’t image how I’d be feeling if it wasn’t for our lovely massage therapists!” Chris said.

Tell us about your ride week:

“We started day one with a nice tailwind and general excitement across the peloton for the week ahead of us. Passing the Porongorups, with Bluff Knoll in the not too far distance, made for some excellent scenery!

We presented to various schools along the way including Gnowangerup Primary School, Kojonup High School, Narrogin Senior High School and Mandurah Catholic College.

I was inspired by so many young adults during the school Q&A sessions and their ability to ask such thought provoking questions so freely in front of their peers, which no doubt would have taken much courage.

Resources are limited, but the stigma around mental health issues seems to be dissipating,” Martin said.

“Although, we did have a good descent from the escarpment around the 150km mark riding into Pinjarra, day four was our biggest day. We rode 201km.

All pelotons rendezvoused in Mandurah for the final ride to Perth the next day. Many drinks were shared amongst the ride groups. Team MACA also won the Strongman and King of the Mountain jerseys during the week.

The final ride came too quickly. The ride was smooth, we rode behind an all-woman lead out team, catching other pelotons early in the ride.

We received a fantastic welcome across the finish line at UWA. We were met by Geoff Baker, many MACA staff, family and friends. MACA was singled out, for the first time, as a significant fundraiser for the year and past rides.

“After a hard slog of training for 6 months, to be able to ride as a group so confidently (40 riders being able to descend at 60+km/h in close proximity is not for the fainthearted!) and encourage each other both on and off the bike, was very rewarding for me personally to see,” Chris said.

The team is looking forward to Ride for Youth’s 20 anniversary next year, and are already looking to recruit Team MACA riders for 2022.

Congratulations to all involved. The 19th annual Hawaiian Ride for Youth was a huge success, raising over $1.8M for Youth Focus and supporting their mission of creating brighter futures for WA’s youth.

Team MACA! (L to R: Mark Lynn, Ben Williams, Peter Marcakis, Martin Pratt, Chris Pearson (sitting), Brad Miller)

Outside Albany – Team MACA

Wheatbelt riders and their support crew

Enjoying the view – Porongorups near Bluff Knoll

Just keep pedalling! Riders climbing a hill with their entourage

The Wheatbelt crew riding through Kings Park

Purple for Claire – Team MACA wore purple socks during ride week in honour of Brad Miller’s late sister, Claire