Keen cyclists are getting ready for a huge challenge this weekend, riding from Brisbane to the Gold Coast. It’s all for charity of course, helping returned servicemen and women settle back into their healthy lives.

Bridget Nagel reports.


At the Mates4Mates recovery centre, Friday is cycle day, today’s session the last one before Sunday’s 100-kilometre charity ride.

The group offers support and physical exercise for wounded, injured or ill Defence Force members and their families.

Rhys Gelsthorpe, Mates4Mates Liason Officer: “Cycling is just a good opportunity because a lot of the members will have impact injuries, lower limb injuries that they can’t exactly run anymore.”

But the Brisbane mates don’t just enjoy cycling.

Trevor Hewitt, Mates4Mates Member: “Mates4Mates has just provided uh, somewhere to come, it’s a great place to come, to talk to people, everyone’s very friendly I’ve met some great people here. It just brings out the best in everyone, and everyone is there to help each other. There’s a team spirit.”

The charity raises awareness of the challenges Defence Force members face returning to civilian life.

This weekend’s ride from Brisbane to the Gold Coast will be one of the more enjoyable hurdles.

Over 4000 ex-servicemen have used the recovery centre in the past five years and for the Brisbane mates, Sunday’s ride is both a physical and psychological achievement.

It’s another leg of their long journey made easier by the right support.

Bridget Nagel, QUT News.