McDonalds Inverell restaurant has announced a three-year, naming-rights sponsorship of the highly respected Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic, a challenging one day race covering 228 km in New South Wales, Australia. In addition to the new title sponsor, organisers have announced that Heinrich Haussler, who rides for ProTour team Gerolsteiner, will be an ambassador of this year's September 13 event.
I am excited about the sponsorship as I am personally passionate about cycling," said McDonald's Inverell licensee Chris Rodgers. "I have participated in the Ride for Sick Kids charity ride, a gruelling 600km bike ride from Armidale to Newcastle, for the past three years.
I think cycling is a great form of exercise and promotes a healthy lifestyle amongst families," he added. "I hope the sponsorship encourages children and their families to get active, hop on a bike and enjoy the outdoors together."
The Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic was launched by local resident Harold Strahley in September 1961 and 47 years later the race has become a national and international race attracting top grade cyclists, including top professional rider Scott Sutherland.
This is the first time a major sponsor has come on board and committed to a substantial sponsorship," said event committee president Michael Hoynes. The sponsorship displays McDonalds commitment to supporting local sporting events and also the increasingly popularity of cycling. With McDonalds support, we are able to further grow the race and support local riders as they compete on the global scene."
Other changes for the 2008 Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic include a new race for women and Under 19s in addition to the A Grade division, Division 2 and Division 3.