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Lachlan Morton will ride from Germany to the Ukrainian border to raise money for the Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund

Australian sets off on 1,063 kilometer ride this weekend as he looks to raise funds for refugees.

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This weekend Lachlan Morton will set off on a ride from Germany all the way to the Ukrainian border in order to raise money for the Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund. The Australian hopes to raise $50,000 from the ride that will cover 1,063 kilometers.

Morton said it will be the longest ride he’s ever done.

The Australian was moved to act almost as soon as he heard about Russian’s invasion of Ukraine. Morton was racing at the Gran Camiño in Spain at the time and was having breakfast with teammate and Ukraine rider Mark Padun when news of the invasion began to filter through.

“That made it hit closer to home, having a teammate who is directly impacted by it,” Lachlan said in a press release issued by his team.

“I found it hard to focus on trying to get ready for a race when something so significant was happening in the world. I’m a pretty optimistic person generally, but in the past couple of weeks, I’ve just felt that there has been very little to be excited about. It’s hard to get your head around. It’s surreal in a way. You watch the news, and the news is so heavy that you almost just disengage from it, because it is too much.” 

 

The ride will start from Munich before heading through the Czech Republic and then into Poland before reaching the final destination at the border crossing between Korczowa and Krakovets. All money raised will go towards helping refugees who have fled from the war zone. Media reports indicate that at last three million Ukrainians have left their homes and crossed the borders into countries such as Poland.

“I kept thinking, wow, I could actually do that in one ride,” Morton said.

“So that was my idea. I’m not an overly political person. I’m not an expert in any of this. I’m just trying to do the one thing I know how to do and engage the bike-riding community to help. My idea is to highlight the fact that war is not a far-off problem. Conflicts are a bike ride away, all over the world. That’s the intention behind it, and to try and raise as much money as we can to help out people who have been displaced.”

“It feels like it is some far-off, distant terrible thing that is going on, that is almost a world away. But the reality is that it is not. So, I hope that covering that distance on a bike, and interacting with people on the way, will help to cement the reality of it a bit more.”

Padun still have family located in Ukraine and while his mind is obviously on their safety and the well-being of everyone in the Ukraine he applauded his teammate’s efforts.

“Honestly, I don’t know what people should do. I don’t know what I personally can do,” Padun said.

“It is difficult to fully concentrate because you are aware that a war is still happening in your country. What the people of Ukraine need is for the war to be stopped. But what Lachlan is doing is good. The more people who are speaking about this, the better. It is great that he is raising money for Ukrainian refugees, too.”

VeloNews readers can learn more about GlobalGiving’s Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund and donate here. EF Education First, Cannondale, and Rapha have combined to donate $100,000 to the relief fund.