June 5, 2023
The Collie community recently held their 80th Tom Lowry Memorial Race on 29 April. The race has also recently broken a glass ceiling with the first woman, Sally Carter coming in first place, as well as another woman, Kate Bonner placing third.
The Mining and Energy Union has long sponsored the event every year since it began in 1942.
The Tom Lowry Memorial Race was named after Tom Lowry, who was the Secretary of the Coal Miners Industrial Union of Workers of Western Australia from 1932 to 1941.
Western Australian District Secretary, Greg Busson said that Tom helped usher in a lot of positive change in the mining industry, including in safety and improving working conditions, and his legacy lives on in Collie through the race.
The race is 102km in distance and begins at the Collie Motorplex in Cardiff.
“The race would be one of the longest continuously running races in Australia,” said Greg.
“The race has run continuously for 80 years, with only one year it not being held due to COVID-19 restrictions in 2020.
“Collie has a long history of cycling, including hosting the Donnybrook Cycling Classic which is another historic racing event that starts in Collie.
“We’ve seen events such as the Tom Lowry Memorial Race continue to be a cornerstone of our community, particularly as Collie transitions away from being soley reliant on coal production.”
In 2019, the Western Australian State Budget committed $10 million to create over 180km of high-quality mountain bike and bushwalking trails in Collie.