Wednesday, November 6, 2019

McCoy's Cafe' Coffee Run

I managed to get out for a spin yesterday with a mate from the Netrider forum. I had noticed on social media that Steve Waugh's charity foundation was conducting a bicycle ride called The Captain's Ride and they would be calling in to McCoy's Cafe in Cooyar for morning tea. 

I hatched a plan to make sure we were there in time to clap them in but it would involve an  early start for us. Mike and Steve were up for it so at 0530 (on a day off work) we were stands-up and dodging the "tradie" traffic on the way across town, headed for Mt Glorious.

250km each way

Once we began ascending Mt Nebo and Mt Glorious, being so early, we had the perfect run with not a single car to impinge on our enjoyment of that sinuous strip of asphalt. I was on the BMW and putting into practice the techniques that I had learned a few weeks back. It was immensely satisfying to have a very definite turn in point and to steer, swiftly, at that point, then to roll on the throttle. We weren't going fast but then we didn't slow down at all through the twisties. ;) Suffice to say I am already at least 50% better/safer as a rider and the best thing is there are 3 more levels of CSS to go.

We stopped at the far end of Northbrook Parkway to say goodbye to Steve (ZX10) and to have a better look at Mike's brand new (to him) Kawasaki 1000 Ninja. I do have a soft spot for the big Kwakas after 2 x ZZR600s and a ZX9R. They just have a certain look.

Mike and I continued the 50km or so to Esk where he topped up with fuel and we had our first coffee for the day as we surveyed the good people of Esk starting the working day.

From Esk we climbed the range, up to Hampton. This is a nice little ride that we did a few months back. It was a fairly uneventful ride through Crows Nest and on to Cooyar. From Hampton on this was all new country to me. Very dry, new country. The drought sure is biting hard with bare paddocks and limp looking trees everywhere. We Need Rain!!

Arriving at Cooyar the first thing we saw was McCoy's Cafe...because there isn't much in Cooyar to be honest! We quickly parked up and as we had just made it here before 10am, ordered a coffee and a burger. They were expecting 100 hungry riders/support people so our timing was impeccable. Just as our huge burgers arrived, so did the first group of riders.

We watched for an hour or so as the riders drank, ate, stretched, ached and chatted.

Aching rider gets seen to.

We spotted Steve Waugh, Matt Hayden (opening batsman for Oz) and Will Power wandering around. All too soon, the riders were mounting up and heading out into what was turning out to be a very windy afternoon. (we would learn that there were gusts to 80km/h all afternoon)

This left us in a sudden vacuum of serenity after the mayhem that proceeded!
It also gave us a chance to have a look around inside the cafe'. So, what makes McCoy's cafe' so special? Well, apart from the delicious food, it is the proprietor. None other than ex 500GP racer Gary McCoy! Now I am not sure what would make a kid from Sydney and former world traveller set up in a (and I'm being kind here) one-horse-town like Cooyar......but then, re-reading that last sentence, I may have answered the question. 
I did have a brief chat with Gary, after he sidled up to me while I was looking at the memorabilia. He caught me a bit unawares and as he was eating a sandwich I didn't introduce myself and shake his hand. That put me off a bit and then I didn't know what to say to him. D'oh! Stage fright!! I have since noticed that he does some coaching up there, which would be cool to do as he was THE king of slide/drift on a 500GP bike and also Simon Crafar's team mate back in the late '90s.

The cafe' has some interesting memorabilia scattered around and had a nice chilled out vibe. Gary said they had been in business for just on three years. I will be back at some stage and I hope it goes well for him. The food is great and you just don't expect this kind of thing way out here!!
Go check it out.

Mike and I reluctantly mounted up for the jaunt back home. As I said earlier, the wind had picked up to almost ridiculous levels and most of the 250km home was pretty challenging. We stopped for fuel and a quick respite in Fernvale, where a young school boy gave us his opinions on our bikes. Funny and quite the outgoing young fella!

Fernvale stop.

I was a bit knackered when we got home. The 500km took us quite a while in the saddle and that wind! I was being blown all over the road while coming down the Brisbane Valley Highway. With that big sail-like screen I was forced to duck down, grip the tank with my knees and pray (a bit). No wonder I had a pounding headache when I got home.

Still, it was a good day out . Any day not at work has to be a good one!



  1. What a great find, I've heard about Garys cafe and now I have to visit it sometime. Why not move to a small country town to get away from the big smoke. Sounds divine.

    1. Yes it is a great little spot. Just a bit far from Brisbane for an easy day ride - at the speed limit. ;)
      A small country town yes, a tiiinnny little town, I’m not so sure.

  2. So that's where his cafe is. I read he had a cafe and assumed it would be somewhere like Sydney or Melbourne. Odd choice, perhaps family or partner come from there? Doesn't Chris Vermeulen come from somewhere around Brisbane also?

    1. He didn’t really say why he was there but then I didn’t ask if it was a woman..... ;). He might just like living in the bush?
      Chris is from the Sunshine Coast. Not sure where he lives these days as he is working for Foxtel and travelling quite a bit I think.


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