Allan Dunn and Matt Randall hoped to raise $5,000 for injured Australian cyclist Paul Crake in a 24-hour madison ride at New Zealand's ILT Velodrome last weekend. Instead, after a mammoth 3464 laps of the venue, the pair raised nearly $10,000 for the former stair climber who suffered extensive spinal damage during November's Tour of Southland.
"It was harder than I thought it was going to be, more mentally than physically," Randall told The Southland Times. With 12 hours to go, the sleep deprivation was kicking in and my mind was going all fuzzy."
The pair spoke to Crake via telephone on Friday night before starting their 866km journey.
"It probably wouldn't happen anywhere else because Southland people are special people; they just give and that's it in a nutshell really," explained Dunn, who organised the event. "They gave their time, their money and their support and you can't ask for more than that."
The Southland Times, who sponsored a team in the Tour of Southland, joined Invercargill Licensing Trust in sponsoring the appeal.