BORN TO RIDE: Josie Potter (centre left) poses with her cycle team at the Brissie To The Bay. L-R Courtney Jones, Barry Dempsey, Josie Potter, Keith Parker, Gerard Langan, Connor Langan.
BORN TO RIDE: Josie Potter (centre left) poses with her cycle team at the Brissie To The Bay. L-R Courtney Jones, Barry Dempsey, Josie Potter, Keith Parker, Gerard Langan, Connor Langan.

Charity ride is a big achievement

THREE years ago the thought of a simple task like riding a bike down the street seemed like an impossibility to Josie Potter.

Fast forward three years to last Sunday, June 24, which saw the Kingaroy resident for the second year in a row compete in the Brissie to the Bay bike ride fundraiser to raise money and awareness for Multiple Sclerosis.

Mrs Potter, who has lived with MS for the last 12 years, said completing the fundraiser's 25km bike ride throughout the streets of Brisbane made for both difficult and interesting terrain to conquer.

"I really did struggle; what I wasn't prepared for was having to observe traffic lights and stopping for trains," she said.

"There were definitely a couple of times I stopped, let's just say less than gracefully."

This year the Brissie to the Bay bike ride was able to break fundraising records with the amount raised leading up to and during the race.

"I thought they had set an already high benchmark, but they just smashed it," she said.

"In 2011 the event raised more than $500,000, but this year managed to raise $825,000."

Keeping up tradition, Mrs Potter said she would be training for next year's Brissie to the Bay event and hopes to ride in the 50km challenge.

"I have no idea whether it's possible or not, but we started talking about it a couple of weeks ago and I am definitely game," she said.

"I could go down in a heap next week, we don't know, but I'm not going to sit on my bum worrying about next week.

"In the beginning I couldn't ride 100 metres. It's taken me three years to do 25km so who's to say I can't do 50km."

Mrs Potter is hoping the last two years of fundraising has inspired the local community to be more aware of MS and willing to get behind the cause.

"I'd really love to find a good sponsor to sponsor our jerseys," she said.

"It takes a lot of time and a lot of effort tracking down sponsors and it takes me away from the actual fundraising I want to do."

Aside from stepping up the distance for the 2013 race, Mrs Potter said she hoped more people from the region will get involved.

"Ideally we want 20 to 25 riders next year and they don't all have to ride the 50km or the 100km," she said.

"As long as they are willing to ride and interested in raising money for Multiple Sclerosis."

Contact Josie Potter on 040618148 if you're interested in sponsoring, riding or helping with fundraising.

South Burnett

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