Bishop steels himself for gruelling Tour of Blackwood

The fourth annual Rotary Tour of the Blackwood will be held again on Saturday, 21 March 2020 with three courses running through the picturesque hills of Bridgetown, Greenbushes, Balingup and Nannup.

Described as one of the toughest rides in WA, the Full Tour is an extremely challenging 134 kilometre road ride with several Category 4 climbs which attracts many experienced riders.

Former Olympian, multiple gold medalist and current World Record holder, Steele Bishop OAM, will be taking the challenge for the first time this year as the Rotary Club of Bridgetown's Tour Ambassador.

"I'm definitely looking forward to being back in Bridgetown to see how I fare against those hills," he said.

"It's going to be a tough ride for an important cause in a great part of the world."

The half course (65km) and 'Not so Cozy' (30km) courses are suited to riders with good general fitness and are equally as scenic.

Funds raised from the ride go to Blackwood Youth Action, a local Charity, to provide counselling and other mental health services to young people across the Warren Blackwood region.

To date, the Blackwood Tour has raised approximately $85,000 to support youth services in the region.

Professor Fiona Stanley AC, the Patron of The Tour, is a highly respected researcher and advocate for child and adolescent health.

"Across Australia, one in four young people will suffer a mental illness this year, with only a quarter of these receiving professional help," said Professor Stanley.

"Young people in rural Australia do not have access to the same services that their regional and city counterparts do. It is pleasing to see innovative, community driven projects to support young people to get the care that they need."

Dr Sarah Youngson, Chair of Blackwood Youth Action, said that "within the Warren Blackwood region there are significant barriers to youth accessing mental health services.

"The funds raised help to break down a number of barriers, allowing our young people to get the professional support they deserve."

Registrations are now open at www.blackwoodtour.info