Michael Eyb's big ride fundraiser has a quirky twist

Big ride: Michael Eyb is one of several Manning residents taking place in the Great Cycle Challenge, an annual fundraiser for the Children’s Medical Research Institute. Photo: Scott Calvin.

Big ride: Michael Eyb is one of several Manning residents taking place in the Great Cycle Challenge, an annual fundraiser for the Children’s Medical Research Institute. Photo: Scott Calvin.

If Michael Eyb manages to maintain his successful fundraising habits, he could soon be sporting the unique appearance of a mowhak and no eyebrows.   

It’s an intriguing twist that Michael has added to his efforts in the Great Cycle Challenge, an annual fundraiser for the Children’s Medical Research Institute held through October. 

Participants in the challenge set a target for the amount of kilometres they aim to cycle and funds they aim to raise. 

Michael initially set his targets at 1000km ridden and $1000 raised.

He also added his own unique twist to the challenge, stating that he would shave a mohawk into his hair when he reached his $1000 target.

I've got a bit of a motto - don't die wondering - and that seemed to fit this pretty well. - Michael Eyb

He subsequently did both before raising his fundraising target to $2500.

With his new target came a new set of incentives: leg and arm hair to be shaved off at $1500, his eyebrows to go at $2000, and then, finally, a tattoo at $2500.

“I’ve always been too scared to get one,” Michael joked about the tattoo.

“But I’ve got a bit of a motto – ‘don’t die wondering’ – and that seemed to fit this pretty well.” 

Two weeks into October Michael busted through the $1500 mark and, true to his word, shaved off his leg and arm hair. 

It’s a fun twist for a good cause that complements Michael’s love of bike riding.

“I’ve always done it, I’ve been riding since I was a kid,” he said.

Michael participated in the same event last year, raising just over $1500, and has done several other bike-based fundraisers, including a 4500km ride across America.

Michael, who works at Bourke’s Bicycles, said there were plenty of other people getting into the spirit around the Manning Valley and getting on their bike for a good cause. 

“There’s quite a few people getting into it, I’m far from the only one doing it,” he said. 

The Great Cycle Challenge has raised $5.9 million to fight kids' cancer since it started in 2013.

More than 600 Australian children are diagnosed with cancer every year, with three dying every week.

It’s harrowing statistics like these that that drive Michael to try help. 

“I’m lucky I’m able to do fundraisers like this and help out these organisations,” Michael said. 

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