Phil Maslen signed up for the 2018 Variety Postie Bike Dash in order to cross it off his bucket list.
Now, after taking part in the six day charity ride with his brother Chris, he’s hooked.
They were part of a group of around 60 riders who left Tamworth on Sunday, November 4 to embark on a 1200 kilometres journey along dirt tracks on Honda CT110 Postie bikes.
It was all about getting dirty and having a good time while raising funds for sick, disadvantaged and special needs children through the Variety – the Children’s Charity.
And they did get dirty.
During the trip the riders stopped by numerous small schools, including Nowendoc Public School on Thursday, November 8, a day which was a particular highlight for Phil.
“Imagine 50 dirty, bearded, old blokes riding up the school which has five students,” Phil smiled. "There was only one boy in the school, Benson, and we played cricket with him.
“We gave him a good run,” Phil laughed.
It was taking time out during the ride, visiting small remote schools, that has really struck a chord with Phil. The riders not only spent time with the students but a lot of the parents provided meals for them.
One of the riders dressed up as Postman Pat and collected get well cards from the students to be delivered to children in hospital.
There was also a rider who set up his bike with a bubble machine.
“The kids loved it,” Phil said.
The group handed $4000 to one school with a student who is completely blind, for the purchase of a 3D printer.
“So if the class was doing a project about Uluru, they could print a model of it for her.” Phil explained.
Although the ride ended on Friday, November 9, Phil is already talking about doing it all again next year.
“The riding was amazing and so were the people,” he said. “Such good camaraderie.”
“We were all there to ride.”
It was extremely dusty, but Phil loved it.
“It was so well organised. We rode on gravel road I didn’t know existed.”
Joining Phil and Chris on the ride was fellow Gloucester resident, Jamie Wilson and Phil reckons they’ll all be doing it again next year.