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He played for Carlton for 10 years, notching up a whopping 244 games, but now Andrew McKay will turn his talent to the bike track – all in the name of hope.

The former footballer will take part in the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race as part of the Let’s Beat Bowel Cancer Ride for Research team. 

McKay will don the lycra on February 1 when he rides 115km from Geelong to the Great Ocean Road, all while raising funds for bowel cancer research.

“I’ve done a few long rides so it’s not too daunting, but I haven’t been on the bike lately – it’s just finding the time,” McKay said.

But as a good friend of Prof Paul McMurrick, Head of the Cabrini Monash University Department of Surgery, McKay said he simply had to help out.

“It’s not a race, it’s about enjoying ourselves and raising money and awareness for bowel cancer,” he said.

“I think that’s what’s so important because if you get it early, it’s treatable. If not it can have dire consequences. Early detection is key, do the tests, do the home kits, we should all be doing those because you just never know.”