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Richie Porte (Team Sky)
Petition for 'a metre matters' gains crucial support
On Saturday morning Richie Porte, the 2013 Australian Road Cyclist of the year, will call upon his cycling comrades to ‘sign up for safer cycling’ on behalf of over 4 million Australians who regularly ride their bikes.
Porte has made the pledge having said in a press release that 'enough is enough' following a horrid 2013 that saw 48 bike riders lose their lives across Australia, including fellow Tasmanian Lewis Hendey on the eve of Christmas and has added his support to the launch of a Federal Petition to implement a metre matters as law.
The petition will call upon the Australian Government to implement changes to the Australian Road Rules mandating a minimum overtaking distance of one metre when drivers pass bike riders on the road.
"I'm going to put my name to this, on behalf of the families who are grieving over the loss of their loved ones in senseless bike-related tragedies, and the millions of Aussies who deserve to ride their bikes in a safer environment, whether for work, sport or play," said Porte in preparation for the weekend.
On Sunday he will compete in the Elite Men’s Australian Road Race Championship with Nathan Earle and CJ Sutton by his side.
"The Amy Gillett Foundation's a metre matters campaign has highlighted the need for legislation to drive safer behaviour on our roads," he said.
Supported by Andrew Nikolic MP, Federal Member for Bass, Cycling Tasmania is sponsoring the petition that will run for three months before being presented to the House of Representatives in May.
Symbolically, the launch will take place immediately prior to the start of the Australian Women’s Road Australian Race Championships – a pet event of Amy Gillett who was killed while cycling in 2005 when hit by an out-of-control driver.