Being Lars Marshall ~

2012 Santos GLNG Brisbane to the Gold Coast Cycle Challenge

2012 Santos GLNG Brisbane to the Gold Coast Cycle Challenge

I met Lars at coffee after a Lifecycle Wombles ride a little while back. I had seen photographs of him and had chatted to him on Facebook, so I recognised his smiley face when I saw him sitting around the table wearing, what I like to refer to as, the ‘Smurf Kit’ (bright blue and white Lifecycle team kit). The first photograph I had seen of Lars was of him sitting in a big bubbly spa bath with his friend, Andrew, (post O’Reilly’s Challenge). It was the funniest image I had ever seen! His hair was spiky and he had the cheesiest grin on his face…like a little boy who just found the chocolate chip biscuits in the pantry. There was something about this young man that I liked. He has such an enthusiasm for life and for cycling. Always with a smile on his face. He is strong, fit and healthy and enjoys cycling with his friends and the Lifecycle Team. It is such a wonderful sight to see a young man embrace a sport and look after his body. It would be so amazing if all young men thought this way. I asked Lars to share a little bit about himself and his joy of riding his bike.

Here is his story…

I started cycling as a result of joining Southbank Triathlon Club in 2010.

I had a friend who I worked with at NAB called Max who was currently a member there and was training to race in Germany and abroad. He was very inspirational. When I purchased my bike (Giant TCR 2 Advanced 2010) I thought this was an insane amount to spend on a bike! Max would take me riding to Mt Nebo before work once a week. A nice hard introduction to road cycling I must say!

Basically, from here I loved the bike. I instantly began commuting and have been ever since. It’s faster, free and most importantly fun (the 3 F’s). My bike is my transport and I cycle in group rides 5 times a week on average. I have ridden 6,393km since purchasing my bike. My biggest ride was 240km in one day.

Thursday Morning Lifecycle Tour de Redcliffe

Lifecycle O’Reilly’s Challenge 2012

Looking for a faster group to ride with, I found Lifecycle, as that was Max’s and mine meeting spot. Work prevented me to ride with Lifecycle and it wasn’t until May 2012 that I rocked up to a Wednesday morning Coot-tha ride that I met Andrew (which he introduced STRAVA to me that fateful Wednesday morning). Ever since, I’ve been fortunate enough to meet a lot of lovely people through cycling & Lifecycle, yourself including, Caroline.

Cycling has had the biggest and most positive effect in my life since moving to Brisbane in 2007. I recommend everyone do it. It’s free, its fun, it’s social, it’s healthy and it’s as competitive as you want to make it.

My lifelong dream is to have a job that allows me to ride everyday and become very competitive and compete professionally.

My greatest memories on my bike would include finishing the Brisbane – Gold Coast 2012 in the lead group with a time over 1hr quicker then when I had ridden it in 2010.
 Riding Lifecycle’s O’Reilly’s Challenge (Lamington National Park Road, Gold Coast Hinterlands Queensland, Australia) in 2012 and…basically…all the Lifecycle Brisbane River Loops and Tour de Redcliffe (TDR’s).

Lars Marshall

Dave Sharp ~ Safe Cycling Australia

I recently met Dave Sharp through a friend of mine. He was looking for some design work for his organisation, Safe Cycling Australia. When he explained to me what SCA was about I immediately jumped on it! I was inspired by his attitude and determination to make “SCA all about cyclists reclaiming space on Australia’s roads”. As a cyclist I find it pretty impressive that people, like Dave, take the time and effort to rally for projects such as the State and Federal Government’s for a Minimum Safe Passing Distance rule of at least one (1) metre to be enshrined in law. Such a change will help to ensure that we can all get from A to B and back to A again by being able to maintain a more authoritative position whilst sharing our limited roadspace with other users. I asked Dave to share his story…


I started Safe Cycling Australia (SCA) without actually starting SCA in 2009 when I decided to address a growing list of personal health concerns and the inevitable depression that sets in when you feel 20 years older than your actual age.

My parents had recently returned from visiting the family in NZ and had told me about their recently introduced 1.5 metre rule and as I’d litterally just started riding again, I thought it’d be great to see a similar rule implimented here.

I was finding at the time that in the 20 years since I’d stopped riding regularly (4-500km per week) motorists had become a lot more aggressive and seemingly anti-cyclist, so I set about asking a few riders I knew what they thought of petitioning the State Government for a Minimum Safe Passing Distance to be made law in Queensland, Australia. There were more thumbs up than thumbs down. So late in ’09 I penned an e-petition and a paper copy which was distributed to every bike shop in Brisbane we could physically get to.

After gaining some press and the support of a few high profile athletes such as Robbie McEwen, the 2 copies of the petition were tabled in Parliament, and we gained a response from the then Minister – Rachel Nolan MP – around 2 months later.

The rubbish response and my determination to see this through to the end resulted in the birth of Safe Cycling Australia in 2009.


In the first year we received a nomination in the Australian National Bicycling Acheivement Awards, receiving an Honorable Mention and being beaten to first spot by the Qld Transport Minister herself. We also started work on the first version of the SCA Jersey, now a full kit, and we began doing what we could via social media to grow a supporter-base and lobby harder for the 1m rule to be introduced.

We have in the last three years gone from strength to strength with SCA almost taking on a life of it’s own. We are the first Org (first anything really) to have been nominated in the Australian National Bicycling Acheivemment Awards three years running which is huge for us.


We were instrumental in seeing Brisbane’s Share The Road signage introduced into Brisbane’s CBD. We are very proud to have been able to enlist the support of Brisbane’s cycling community in 2011/12 to gather and donate over 240 bicycles to the flood affected after the SEQ floods. That was an emotional roller coaster for us after meeting so many that were hit so hard and had lost litterally everything, which is where the bikes came in handy, particularly in Ipswich and the Lockyer Valley.

We’ve helped cyclists be more visible on Australia’s roads thanks to the jersey in three years. Everyone who wears one swears it actually does affect driver behaviour around them while riding. WIN!

While we are a small operation, we are pushing 24/7 to see the 1m Rule (now increased to 1.5m as we think that 1m simply isn’t enough) brought in in Queensland. With the way our States and Territories work, once one State makes the change, the others will usually follow with regards to roads policy and traffic rules/legislation. We are leading the way in this one area nationally, but we are also trying to encourage bike riders to acknowledge good driving by showing their appreciation, and not doing the stuff that makes drivers angry, such as red light running and wearing helmets while we’re legally obliged to, as much as we may loathe having to. Peer pressure is a good thing and we’ll always encourage our riding buddies around Oz to use it.

We also have Australia’s first National Drive2Work Day on November 11 which we will be starting to focus on shortly, the SCA Thingies which can be thrown on various parts of your bike and the ever popular cycling kit.


SCA Thingies

We run on an almost $0.00 budget – and are determined never to see a single cent of Government funding as it comes with strings, but we still punch well above our weight nationally and internationally. We do that because our supporters love and cuddle us, and help us keep charging ahead for the things they themselves consider important. We listen to bike riders and then do what we can. Without all of them, and a few so generous with their time and financial support such as Studio e and Australian Cycle Skills, we’d be nothing.

Oh, nearly forgot, I’m a massive world cycling fan (nut) and am an Australian ambassador for BikePure who also support us, and I have seen Courney Feild, Alex Morgan and Brook Ramshaw all signed up and committed to riding as clean and Proud Aussie future, no, current future…hmmm…stars and future Olympians and world champions.

You can follow Safe Cycling Australia at 

Facebook ~

Twitter ~ @SafeCyclingOz

Queensland Government Department of Transport and Main Roads Road Rules ~

Being Rachel Edwards ~ “Sock Puppet”

Rach Edwards 5

I was recently out at the Nundah Criterion Circuit (Albert Bishop Park, Brisbane) watching a friend participate in a race. This was my first time out at the track. It was a buzz of activity … an old fashioned bell rang, there was chatter about race numbers, laughter, tactical planning, announcements of sorts blaring over the microphone, music, and importantly, the sweet smell of espresso coffee wafted out from a mobile coffee van. It was fascinating! Race bikes were everywhere and came in all brands, colours and sizes. Cyclists wearing brightly coloured flashy lycra kits bearing club names darted about. I was mesmerised…until a flash of pink caught my eye…pinkkkkkkkk…so pretttttty…powder pink. Was that black or gun metal grey? Pink handlebar tape. Pink cables. Who owned this mystical pink bike? I was about to bend down to take a sneaky snap when a young woman appeared. It was as though I was shot through a worm hole and was back at school behaving like a girl with a crush…and in a girlie squeaky voice I said “Hi! Can I take a photo of your pink bike?” She replied “Sure!” I snapped the pics, you see above, and asked what was her name. “Rachel” she replied. I asked her a few questions about her bike. It was a locally designed and built bike with titanium frame, and that she wanted this bike to last her a lifetime. She told me a whole lot more…but as I am only new to this road bike caper all I could do was nod my head to signify I was listening…as the words that came out of her mouth were another language to me! I asked Rachel would she mind if I wrote a blog about her and her pink bike and would she like to share her story about her love of cycling? She provided me with her story and a link to her blog. I was completely in aw! I have only ever read and seen pictures of women with this level of cycling skill. She has an absolutely amazing talent for both mountain and road cycling and her high level of commitment and sheer determination is an example of what is possible if you put your mind to something. The outcome is unreal! I think I have discovered my new role model…

…this is how it goes…

About me

Rach Edwards Race 4

I like bikes. Mtb bikes, road bikes, whatever – riding is fun. I know I have a problem because at current count I own 4 mountain bikes and 6 road bikes and I need them ALL!

I only really got into sport in my late 20’s, through the typical office trash talk around the BRW triathlon. Turns out I quite liked it and was good at it.  I had a brief stint in sprint triathlon before going on a mountain bike ride for cross training at lysterfield in melbourne. It was so much fun I never came back to triathlon. I did a bunch of adventure racing including XPD (900km, nonstop, unsupported race), a few geoquests and so on and then moved into 24hr solo enduro riding, which is probably my pick of things to do on a bike. I’ve now had a couple of seasons on the road, mostly as a way to improve my MTB fitness.Rach Edwards StateITT

I love riding because getting on my bike and working hard just blows everything else away. I call it feeling the machine and I guess it is my chosen form of meditation. I also love to race and I am probably a typical overachiever at heart. I’ve done ok on the road with a few masters titles and open race podiums, and I have done pretty well on the MTB. I have also made the best friends.

Most people think the enduro thing is crazy. I often get asked why I do it. For me it is really about proving determination and will. Being able to do something I didn’t think I could. It started as a goal to finish a 24hr, these days I am experienced enough that I can actually race them. The feeling you get finishing one of these is pretty amazing and gives you confidence that overlaps into your daily life. You know you can handle anything as long as you don’t quit. I think that is a great lesson.

I’d like to get another world title for 24hrs before I slow down – hoping this year in October will give me a chance!

I also want to get myself up to A on the road. I’ve had the call from the state handicapper – one more result and I can go (fingers crossed for Battle on The Border).

The future…well…

Next year I am lining up to race RAAM – Race Across America in June 2014. I’ve been granted qualification to make a solo attempt. I am planning on racing a tandem with Shannon Duggan because it is the hardest way you can do the race – and as long as one of you is qualified on a tandem you are in! so we are in for 3000 miles, non-stop. We are super lucky that GoPro have come onboard to get things started but we still have work to do on signing a major sponsor. Lots of work to do, on and off the bike.

In an extension of my passion (obsession) I am also starting up some bike related business. I am not really expecting to make too much money, but it will support my BIKE lifestyle 😉  First cab off the rank is bringing DannyShane cycling gear to Australia. They make some great looking jerseys and knicks, but the key thing is they are made from bamboo. If you havent had a piece of bamboo clothing you are missing out – and it is ecofriendly fabric thing too so I have good karma on the trails. 🙂

Rachel Edwards

To view Rachels blog go to: