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22 October, 2021

Ride supports neonatal babies

MORE than 100 cyclists took to the road on Sunday for the annual Ride for Isabel fundraiser for neonatal babies in Far North Queensland.

Cyclists were able to for the first time journey around the incredibly scenic Yarrabah after special special permission was granted from the local community.

While the event has been running since 2010, it now comes under the banner of the Far North Queensland Hospital Foundation and forms part of the Tour of the Tropics cycling festival.

Foundation acting Chief Executive Officer Joe Cristaldi said cyclists had several ride route options, with some choosing to tackle the famous Yarrabah hill as part of the 120km Gran Fondo.

The ride was instigated in 2010 by Speaker of the Queensland Parliament and Mulgrave MP Curtis Pitt and wife Kerry, after their daughter Isabel was stillborn at 41 weeks in 2008.

“Our family shares a close connection with Yarrabah so it is exciting to see the Alive Pharmacy Warehouse Ride for Isabel starting in Yarrabah this year,” Mr Pitt said.

“Losing a child is one of the most difficult tragedies a person can experience and my wife Kerry and I are pleased the ride will support local neonatal services,” he said.

The event was extra special this year for the Pitt family with Curtis and Kerry’s son Tristan joining Curtis on a bike in this year’s ride while wearing Curtis’ jersey from the inaugural ride in 2010.

In 2020, there were 1019 admissions to the Special Care Nursery at Cairns Hospital, 167 of whom needed oxygen support, 273 needed ventilation support including bubble continuous positive airway pressure, ventilation and humidified high flow.

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