Cycling around Violet Town

History: Violet Town has a wonderful history of cycling, the town once having its own velodrome and a very strong cycling club. In 1938 the Aldridge family played a big part in a Violet Town Cycling Club's four-mile road race. Joe filled first place, George was second, Roy third and Arthur fourth. This was claimed as a record for a cycling family in Australia, if not in the world.

The track at the Recreation Reserve was in use in 1939 and the first professional bike race was held there in January 1940:

The track, used for open professional cycling for the first time, was safe except for a flat bend, where all the crashes took place. The organising committee spent considerable time and money making the circuit suitable for racing, and, after Saturday's experience, the bad bend will be banked. It should be perfect for the next carnival, and attract a record entry for a country carnival.

The club went into abeyance for five years during WWII but resumed in 1946. In August 1946, there was a move to extend and enlarge the cycle track and by November 1948 a 25 foot track had been erected which was used at the opening meeting in December that year. The local RSL ran an Easter cycling carnival in the 1950s.

Now: There are many flat rides in and around Violet Town. For example, children can safely cycle the Honeysuckle Creek walking path and many of them ride their bikes to school. There are rides of varying distances that lead out of Violet Town. There are many on sealed roads but there is also the opportunity for riding on some rougher and more challenging dirt roads. To ride to Euroa, one option is to take the Murchison Road and turn left into Moglonemby Road (North) until you reach Euroa.

Hill climbs abound with the Strathbogie Ranges offering a huge variety of steep climbs up on the tableland. Once up there, again there are more easy rides as the area is relatively flat! Roads leading towards Strathbogie from Violet Town include Harrys Creek Road or going via Boho.

Maps and profiles

http://www.mapmyride.com/au/wangaratta-victoria/harry-039-s-creek-euroa-violet-town-route-3636906 A hill climb up Harrys Creek Rd, descent and down Kelvins View to Euroa and flat return to Violet Town.

http://www.mapmyride.com/au/benalla-victoria/55-18km-road-cycling-on-21-09-13-route-293909235

http://www.nevictoria.com/euroa-wang.htm Euroa to Wangaratta via Violet Town, Dookie Hills and Warby Ranges – about 128km

Seymour to Violet Town via Euroa and Strathbogies – 159 km http://www.velocycles.com.au/strathbogie-ranges-rides/

Dookie, Violet Town, Caniambo loop - 85km https://www.bikemap.net/en/r/751048/

Cycling in the Shire

https://www.strathbogie.vic.gov.au/facilities/sport-a-recreation/cycle-routes

The Strathbogie Shire has wonderful scenery throughout which can be enjoyed from your bike. Whatever your preference and abilities are, there are many routes to enjoy whether it be meandering through the wineries along the Goulburn River or through the hills of Strathbogie. Here is a map of routes you might like to use: https://www.strathbogie.vic.gov.au/images/images/2010-11-17%20Strathbogie%20Shire%20Tear%20Off%20Map%20Cycle%20Routes%202.pdf

For those who like joining an organised ride, ‘Ride the Ranges’ is an annual event organised by the Rotary Club of Euroa. http://ridetherangeseuroa.org.au/

It has 30 km, 85 km or 130 km rides, several of which go through Violet Town, eg. http://www.cyclingprofiles.com.au/HTM/Recreational/REC_ERR2014B.htm

The Greater Shepparton BUG (Bicycle Users Group) http://www.sheppbug.com.au often run rides out of Violet Town, usually starting at the old Violet Town Hotel at 51 Cowslip St. For example, http://www.sheppbug.com.au/events/harrys-creek-road-melbourne-cup-day-special/