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State of Origin - 2008

32129 Views 95 Replies 19 Participants Last post by  passx
NT Girl, thought I would kick this thread of for you. :D
So any one interested in slipping into the NT for a ride and :ale: ?
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No Jwm - the NT part was a bit of a jest. At this stage SoO has always been held more or less mudway between Sydney and Brisbane, but next year it will still be between those two cities, but will include great roads in SEQld. I have led a few rides on this loop, and everyone ends with a smile on their face.

Exact timing will be decided. I have initial looking at Kyogle accomodation, which is OK but just not near anywhere convenient to eat.

Watch this space.
They would have been wasted, Jwm - they don't wear them up there :crylarf:
The venue is found, the ride options are organised, and the date is set for the 5th annual State of Origin get together. The Founding Fathers, Phil and Dave, did their scouting ride in the rain, and crossed Kyogle off the list as the accomodation and eating options are just not up to our (questionable) standard. So we are going to stay 30k's south, in Casino instead:

Venue: Milgate Motel, Casino Tel 02 66621022 Fax 02 66621828 email [email protected] Address: Cnr Centre & North Streets, Casino.
Ride options - these will be posted later, but everbody who has ridden the planned loop has ended the day with a huge smile on their face. Some of the roads are on 'The Bears' list of 'must-ride' roads, others would be if only he knew about them.
Dates: First weekend in April (Friday 4th and Saturday 5th)

The motel has undercover parking outside each room for bikes, a pool and BBQ area, and we will probably BBQ on Friday night, and have the State of Origin dinner at a nearby restaurant on Saturday night.

For info, Casino is 225k's from Brisbane city centre, and 720k's from Sydney CBD.

Also, if anyone gets there before midday on Friday, we will probably take an afternoon ride up to Tenterfield along the Bruxner Highway - another stretch of road in Australia that must be ridden.

Make your own bookings direct with the motel - first come, first served (there is another motel nearby if we need more rooms. This may happen, as I think this is going to be the biggest State of Origin yet).

More details will follow.
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Now that I'm back (and hopefully the weather clears soon) I'll be checking out the route before the dates, just to acquaint myself with new and unforeseen hazards.
Jwm - aren't decisions just a pain sometimes. I hope that whatever your decision is we do catch up at SoO - maybe you can get the day (or two?) off that you need.
Moose, you must have been reading my mind :mrgreen: I have just surfaced from a very busy work-month, and will be posting details of shirts and how to order within the next week.
If you haven't yet booked, time is running out. This could be the best FJR-specific get-together and ride of the year.

Time to order shirts, for those who want them. Remember that this is the 5th annual State of Origin get together, and the shirts are only available by pre-order. The style selected is:
Ladies: lady/index.htm

In both cases the colour is Black-Ashe-White.

The cost per shirt, including the embroidered logo, with your name or nickname, is $35.00 including GST. This gives an idea of what the embroidered logo will look like:

Postage, if required, will be extra. I aim to take the shirts with me, or if there are too many, they will be mailed ahead to the motel.

I need to know quantaties and sizes by Sunday. Please post details here, or PM me with your details. I'll contact you to arrange payment options.
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Thanks all who have PM'd their shirt orders. For those not yet decided, don't miss it - you can only get it this once. :wink:
Karl, I think the Pacific is shorter, but a few suggestions I have are:
From Coffs to Grafton take the back road (via Nana Glen). It's about the same distance, but just far more scenic and relaxing (less traffic)
From Grafton head straight up the Summerland Way to Casino. It's 100k's easily doable in an hour.

Maybe JWM will have some thoughts - he's from Sydney.

If I was doing it I would probably take the New England to Armidale, then head down to Grafton (Waterfall Way, etc) then Summerland Way. Not sure of the distance, but would include some great riding.
Karl, this would be my overall suggested route if 'best riding' was the objective, and you had the time:

Google Earth gives it as 620k's from where the highways split to Casino. The last section, from Grafton to Casino (The Summerland Way), does not come up on most Australian mapping systems for some reason. They often route you along the Pacific Highway.

The Pacific Highway route is about 560k's, but all along the Pac HWay, except after Coffs, as shown below:
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Moose, we are planning to get there around midday or soon after. I may take a run up to Tenterfield and back in the afternoon, just because I really like that road.

As regards numbers, I have ordered 10 mens shirts and 3 ladies shirts, but I do know of a few coming that have not ordered shirts. This is as big a group as we probably want.

Guys who have been on previous SoO rides know that the numbers are not as important to us as the quality of the companionship, and the ride on Saturday. Sometimes the Saturday ride is a bit of a 'coffee cruise', but usually it is a 'great bike experience'. This SoO route will have a bit of both - there will be stops along the way to stretch, but it will be far more of a 'hustle' than a 'cruise'.

We have had a few (very few) that, after the Saturday ride, have said 'never again'. That's cool - that's their choice and we don't want anyone pushing themselves too hard, too fast, or too far. We have not had any bike damage on a SoO and we want to keep it that way. We've also never received any performance awards, although we have probably qualified for a few. Also, everyone will know the 'regroup-points' and the way home (including shortcuts), so if any pillion is suffering sore knees, her rider can leave the group and head back to base. No shame in looking after your pillion (and yourself).

The ride will have parts of everything - some of the best bike roads in Australia (and some of the worst - how can they build road that bad), some great views that will stop and look at and say 'wow!', and some twisty bits that some people have been known to turn around and ride a second time.
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Just an update on the planned ride route for Saturday. There will be 3 options: the full route (about 450k's), a shorter version of this same route (about 350k's), a ride out and meet us option of (230 to 300k's depending on meeting point). To whet your appetite, here is the long option:
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And some info for those who might be geting there early. The motel is in the main street in Casino, just north of the town centre - see the following map:

We are planning to get there midday or thereabouts on Friday. On the map I have noted the nearest hotel/sports bar (we'll see if we can book an upstairs table there for Saturday night), and also the RSL - both walking distance.

Down the main road, past Maccas, there are other hotels/restaurants, and also in Walker Street, I think.

For those who get there early, we are thinking of a Friday afternoon ride up to Tenterfield. My mobile is 0418 787869 so anyone can leave a message if they need to.
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The shirts are ready and being collected tomorrow morning, AND

I have had a last minute request for a shirt from someone who missed the ordering deadline, so when I collect them tomorrow morning I am going to see if I can get two more shirts ordered.

If you haven't yet ordered, you have until 7:30 tomorrow morning to let me know your size and name, and I'll ask and see if I can get them done.
Karl, in my view your current advice is just fine. When I'm solo, I'll run 40/40 (F/R) to 40/42; and when loaded 42/42. In my experience on the FJR a bit harder is better than a bit softer (which, incidentally, is exactly what the actress said to the bishop) :mrgreen:
Atlas, glad you're making it. Looks like we'll have a few for the Friday afternoon ride to Tenterfield, too. Lets make a provisional meeting point at Macca's to leave from there at 1:30 (this may be updated, so watch the site)

There may be as many as 15 bikes on Saturday, and we'll have 2 or 3 'loose' groups who will look out for each other, all meeting at the same stops for coffee, lunch, etc. I'll be looking for 1 or 2 volunteers to be 'mother hen' for each group to just keep headcounts at regroup points, so we all stay in touch.

I've collected the shirts (piccie later) and ordered the late ones, which they say I can collect next Thursday (I'm mailing the carton on ahead - too many to carry on the day).

I have PM'd everybody with payment options, but am not sure if the PM's went through (sentbox was full, and they are all sitting in my Outbox).

Anyway, this was the message:


Shirts are collected.

Cost is $35 each shirt, and payment options are:
Cash on the day (no change given), or
Credit card. For this option you must pay by Wednesday 2 April, by calling Kate on (07) (xxxx PM me for the number) and say you are paying for the FJR shirt - give your name and nickname. I'll have your receipt with the shirt at the SoO.

Look forward to seeing you there,


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Just to whet you collective appetite's a little more. I checked out a short part of the route today, and this is the profile of that section:

And a reminder to Queenslanders - NSW is still on daylight saving time.

Some more planning info: the planned start for Saturdays ride will be at 8:30am, and there will be a fuel stop about 170k's into the ride.

If anyone want GPS route files PM me with your email address and I can send them on to you.
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I've just received a call from Mark at the Millgate Motel, saying he has had 2 cancellations (not SoO related) so he has 2 rooms available for Friday and Saturday nights. He will hold them for 24 hours for the FJR SoO group. So if anyone needs a room at Millgate, get calling. Number is listed earlier in the thread.
Moose - no worries about waiting for the Friday arvo ride. Check in and make your way to Macca's which is 2 blocks down the road into town, and we'll all meet there. My number is 0418 787869. Looking forward to catching up.
Hi Everyone - thanks for a great weekend. Highlights - many, but it wouldn't happen and wouldn't be fun unless guys and girls made it that way. It's great riding and 'sharing wisdom' after the rides. Some great riding, and very fun pace, on some great roads. And we even managed to avoid the showers while I was leading :p

The guys from Sydney arrived Thursday, so they were well rested when the Qld contingent arrived lunch-time Friday (except Swannie, who was finding roads that probably don't even officially exist). Did a quick blast up to Tenterfield and back, and people soon realised why I love that 130k's of road. This taken by pillion-cam:

The coffee shop we found couldn't believe their luck to double their Friday sales just like that (some guys hadn't had time for lunch before we left Casino). Friday dinner was at the local hotel 'test-driven the night before by Karl, Shoey and Wayne. Turned out to be so good we were back there on Saturday too.

Friday evening saw the ceremonial 'handing out of the shirts':

And then Saturday up early for breakfast in the sun:

and the Maccas Courier taking back breakfast in bed for the love of his life (well, I think that is what he said). It was only 2 blocks from the motel:

Then the lineup for the photo.

From left to right: Karl, Rod, Poida, Rico, Peterpan, Shoey, Swannie, David1300, Wayne, Moose (taking piccie - Atlas; joined us later - Phil; missing as he could only make Friday - Glen):

and the girls with their partners bikes (from left: Jodie, Lois, Lou, Zea and Susan):

And the girls with Jodie's Kawasaki:

To allow Jodie to ride along on Saturday we had to make allowances for and call it an orange 'I want to be a FJR when I grow up':
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