ALTHOUGH not competing seriously at the moment, Michael continues
to cycle regularly - both on road and off - but with so many commitments
and lots of travel for speaking engagements, it's not always easy to find
Family camping weekends offer an opportunity to ride to or from the
campsite and Michael often takes a bike with him when he flies, just in
case he gets a few hours free.
He's often spotted on his bike in Canberra and surrounds and people
sometimes even email him (via his website) afterward with a comment or two.
Here's a couple of recent ones:
"I must say I was mightily inspired by you when I passed you on the
hill leaving Wee Jasper yesterday. You're colossal."
"I briefly (I mean briefly) saw you at the lights in town today along
Northbourne Ave on my old bike before you departed. I have heard...stories
about how fast you are but nothing prepared me for the speed of your
departure. You passed me and four others from a standing start. It was a
sight I will never forget. Truly amazing!!"
Over the summer Michael has been a regular competitor in Canberra's weekly
Citerium Races at Mt Stromlo and he joins bunch rides on the roads around
Canberra a couple of times a week. last week he rode with a group of young
tri-athletes in Sydney.
His favourite place to mountain bike around Canberra is Sparrow Hill but he
also recently rode the trail between Glenbrook and Woodford in the Blue
Mountains, first up the fire trail and then down.
"I won my first race ever at the Crits a few weeks ago. I ride in E Grade
so am nowhere near the best riders but I really enjoy it and coming first
in E Grade for me is a real achievement. I rode a good, smart race which is
the most important thing to me.
"My favourite road circuit is about 80 kilometres long and it takes me out
in a loop past Mt Stromlo and Uriarra Crossing and then back over the river
at Cotter and home past Parliament House.
"The Sparrow Hill tracks for mountain biking are amazing but I also have Mt
Majura on my doorstep. It takes me less than five minutes to ride there and
then I have miles and miles of different tracks to choose from. It's
"Canberra is a fantastic place for cyclists. Lots of cycle paths, good wide
streets and drivers that are generally pretty accommodating. I feel safe
riding here and I feel cheated if I can't find the time to ride.
"It's kind of embarrassing getting emails from people who've seen me riding
although I'm pretty conspicuous so that has to be taken into account. It
could work against me though so I'm careful to always do the right thing. I
don't want any emails from irate cyclists or drivers. I haven't had any