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Pollie Pedal crosses finish line at University on Thursday


15 April 2010

The federal opposition leader Tony Abbott crossed the finish line in the Pollie Pedal fundraising bike ride at the University.
The federal opposition leader Tony Abbott crossed the finish line in the Pollie Pedal fundraising bike ride at the University.

The 13th annual Pollie Pedal bike ride, led by the federal opposition leader Tony Abbott, crossed the finish line at the University of Sydney today at 2.50pm.

The pack entered the campus at the main entrance on University Avenue and completed the journey in front of the Quadrangle and the awaiting media.

Each year the Pollie Pedal bike ride raises money for charities and this is the second year it will donate its funds to the Poche Centre for Indigenous Health within the Sydney Medical School at the University. Last year the Pollie Pedal bike ride donated more than $100,000 to the centre.

Today's riders were welcomed to the University by the Vice-Chancellor Dr Michael Spence who delivered a speech along with the former Social Commissioner and Poche Centre patron, Tom Calma, and Associate Professor Ngiare Brown, the director of the Poche Centre.

"The funds raised from Pollie Pedalwill be used for our student placements on clinical outreach programs in regional and remote communities in western NSW and the Northern Territory," said A/Professor Ngiare Brown.

Associate Professor Ngiare Brown and medical students and members of Sydney Uni rugby team, from left, Nathan Trist, Tim Davidson and John Morellato.
Associate Professor Ngiare Brown and medical students and members of Sydney Uni rugby team, from left, Nathan Trist, Tim Davidson and John Morellato.

"This is an important program that provides our students from the medical, dental, and nursing and midwifery faculties with the opportunity to experience the challenges of Aboriginal health care."

"Pollie Pedal brings together people who, through this great social initiative, are demonstrating support for Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander people. This is about real generosity of spirit."

The ride began in Melbourne on April 7 and has travelled through Yea, Benalla, Hume Weir, Khancoban, Berridale, Canberra, Goulburn, before finishing at the University on Thursday.

Other politicians to have joined the ride on different legs include Luke Hartsuyker, Senator Guy Barnett, Pat Farmer, the Hon. Kevin Andrews, Bruce Flegg as well as the athletes Guy Leech, a former Ironman, and six-time Tour de France entrant Stephen Hodge.

Media contact: Jacqueline Chowns, 0434 605 018, jacqueline.chowns@sydney.edu.au