Just one adult member of Pat Kerlin’s family will be missing when they line up for the Great Brisbane Bike Ride on Sunday. But in a secret, ‘surprise twist’, wife Rebecca will be front and centre when the family join a second Bike Week event on Mother’s Day.
Patrick first introduced his son’s Nathan and Lachlan to cycling because long Saturdays devoted to cricket weren’t appealing.
“We joined the Balmoral Cycling Club and it was way better than cricket because it was at the same place every Saturday morning and only for two hours instead of six!” laughs Patrick.
These days both boys and their dad regularly race in criterium races, and the family’s bike collection has swelled to 16.
“I enjoy getting out there and doing stuff with (my sons). They won’t be at home for much longer I guess. It’s a bit hard for me to keep up with my 17-year-old son now because he’s quite fast,” Brian says.
Last year Nathan was keeping pace with Correy Edmunds, the man who completed the ride first and took out the Coot-tha Challenge in 2016, until the climb up Mt Coot-tha. Not bad for a then 16-year-old.
This year’s event will be the longest ride ever for Patrick’s other son, Lachlan. But the 15-year-old is keen to become one of the youngest ever to conquer the Coot-tha Challenge.
Unsurprisingly, Patrick’s wife Rebecca hasn’t escaped this family-wide cycling fervour.
“Now I’ve finally got my wife onto a mountain bike to do some riding and she doesn’t know it yet, but I’ve signed her up for the 65km mountain bike ride out at Fernvale on the Sunday after the GBBR,” Patrick declares with pride and a hint of mischief.
Known as The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Experience, the single day, one-way ride takes in superb off-road riding right on Brisbane’s doorstep in the scenic Lockyer Valley. LINK
Rebecca is very new to cycling having only taken up riding around Christmas last year. Patrick says she’s drawn motivation from those around her and on social media.
“I’d post stuff on Facebook with her name in it. Then her friends would see that and say, ‘well done’, and I’d say there you go, people are liking what you’re doing and they’re all waiting for the next instalment!”
Not one to neglect the added health benefits of cycling, Patrick even put the hard word on Rebecca for extra motivation.
“I may have also said, ‘I’m doing this to save your life’.” Pat laughs.
Rebecca has made such rapid progress she’s now shrugging off Pat’s ‘tough love’.
“We came down a hill on Logan Road and I turned back to see if she was there and she’s gone, ‘Get going!” That was a big watershed moment which was good.”
See you on May 7 Pat and May 14 Rebecca!