News, Truck events

Trucking industry digs deep for cancer research in Townsville

It was by far the biggest Convoy for The Cure ever in Townsville with 268 trucks and 110 bikes helping to raise a record amount for cancer research.

Over $150,000 was collected thanks to the participation of around 110 trucking companies and/or owner-operators.

Held on Sunday, May 26, an estimated 10,000 men, women and children lined streets as the trucks cruised past with drivers honking their horns.

Spectators sat on chairs beside the route, on the back of utes, and other vehicles, or  under the shade of tents in yards and on footpaths, and they waved in appreciation.

The convoy raises money for funding into research of Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), an aggressive and rare type of cancer that forms in the brainstem, and almost always occurs in young children.

Trucks and bikes started gathering around 7.30am at the marshalling area on Webb Drive.

It was a massive logistical exercise for organiser Todd Martin and his hard-working volunteers.

Townsville Mini Loads team from left: Brendan, Shirley, Danielle, Sonia, Peta, Graham, Mark and Anastasia. Image: Alf Wilson

The trucks were parked along Webb Drive and on side streets and it was a busy time.

Big Rigs was there and spoke to numerous drivers and their supporters including Kirk Purtill who was polishing one of the Emerald Carrying Company trucks.

“We have 15 trucks in the convoy this year and support the cause,” he said.

At 9am sharp the convoy took off from Webb Drive with a police escort.

Residents were kept up to the progress of the convoy along the 25km route by live radio crosses from station Power 100.

There was lots of flashy chrome as the trucks cruised along Ingham Road and across Blakey’s Crossing, onto  Duckworth St, Dalrymple Rd, Thuringowa Drive and Riverway Drive before finishing up at Ross Dam Park for a family fun day which was attended by more than 1000.

Along the route some trucks took a short break to allow other traffic to travel.

In total it took the last trucks about 45 minutes to reach the dam park.

At 9am sharp the convoy took off from Webb Drive with a police escort. Image: Alf Wilson

Most of the trucks parked on the park grass which had been cut by council and there were big line ups at the food, drink and ice cream stalls.

Big Rigs spoke to long time convoy participant Daniel Shaw who drives a new MAN truck for Townsville Mini Loads.

“I have been coming to nearly every convoy and this is the biggest,” Daniel said.

The children who were there had a great time and I saw lots of drivers tucking into giant burgers.

Award and recognition categories – Large Fleet Winners Nortrans raised $13,238 (overall $16,238) but gifted the position and Large fleet signage to DF&DL Drain (Burdekin) as they went hard in donating with auctions, selling T-Shirts raffles etc… to raise $13,128….a difference of $110.

Small Fleet Winners were NJ Hauling, $5424 beat Ellsley Metal Recyclers another Burdekin business ($4244).

Nick and Laura Withycombe from NJ have a long history in supporting the event.

Lead Truck Northern Stevedoring Services (NSS)  raised over $29,000, with money still coming in.

Bikes Inaugural Golden Helmet Winner Alex Landel raised $1300.

Next year marks 10 years of the of the convoy.

  • For more pictures from the event, make sure you grab your free copy of the June 7 issue of Big Rigs from the usual outlet, or download the free digital edition at from June 7.

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