Cerberus sailors tackle uphill challenge

Published on CPOCIS Gary Swanton (author), LEUT Sam Jackson-Maher (photographer)

Location(s): You Yangs Regional Park, Vic

Topic(s): HMAS Cerberus, Mountain Biking

Cerberus participants in the You Yangs Dirty Duathlon (L-R) LEUT Sam Jackson-Maher, AC Kelsey Dougall, AC Leigh Brettschneider, PO Rebecca Rogers. (photo: LEUT Sam Jackson-Maher)
Cerberus participants in the You Yangs Dirty Duathlon (L-R) LEUT Sam Jackson-Maher, AC Kelsey Dougall, AC Leigh Brettschneider, PO Rebecca Rogers.

Members of HMAS Cerberus represented both the Navy and Air Force this weekend at the You Yangs Dirty Duathlon. The 36km course consisted of two 4km running stages and an 18km ride through the park’s Mountain Bike (MTB) trails. The event was organised by the HMAS Cerberus Cycling Club as an extension of the Wednesday Sport initiative at HMAS Cerberus.

The first run started and Petty Officer Rebecca Rogers quickly settled into the top section of the field and continued into the bicycle leg in the top three before a couple of crashes set her back. Meanwhile, having completed the run, the cyclists thought they were making back time in familiar territory with Lieutenant (LEUT) Jackson-Maher recouping multiple places after the tactical pace put on for the run. The classic Melbournian weather, with on-off showers and wind, kept the race interesting with slippery roots and large puddles becoming prominent trail features.

In the end, the duathlon turned out to be a runner’s game with PO Rogers, a first time MTB racer, taking the overall win for the women’s short course, posting an impressive time of 1:30:48.

“I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face the entire ride; I’ll definitely be back out here again” said PO Rogers after her first time racing MTB.

As a member of staff at the Technical Training Faculty, LEUT Jackson-Maher said the Cycling Club was an opportunity to promote greater social interaction across Cerberus through the development of a platform which is more than just a mandatory sporting activity. This is the second external event coordinated through the club with attendance at the ‘Around the Bay’ bike ride planned for October.

“This event is a fine example of the benefits of external events can offer to Navy personnel."

“Attendance encourages personal development outside the training environment and contributes to the Navy Resilience Strategy” said LEUT Jackson-Maher.

The event was held at the You Yangs Regional Park about 50 minutes west of Melbourne.