WorldRiderZ Journey: Sydney to Paris

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Motorcycling Charity

On Saturday, July 24, French-born Australian Stephane Etienne and his mate Steve Thais will set out on a 30,000km motorcycle ride from Sydney, Australia to Paris, France to raise funds for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), commencing the first trans-continental journey of the WorldRiderZ.

The WorldRiderZ have one goal — to raise awareness and money to support ongoing CKD research at Sydney Children’s Hospital, a world leader in paediatric renal and urological treatment. The incidence of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) has doubled worldwide in the past 15 years, and now affects one in seven people of all ages, including newborns.

The WorldRiderZ will travel throughout Australia and then parts of Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Europe on a 3-month adventure through diverse cultures and landscapes visiting World Health Organization-recommended renal and urological paediatric units to identify the need for equipment, supplies, access to research and financial support.

The WorldRiderZ will begin their journey by leading a motorcycle ride from Sydney Children’s Hospital in Randwick to Oberon NSW on Saturday, 24 July. Followed by dozens of supporters and fellow motorcycle enthusiasts, the WorldRiderZ will officially start the Australian portion of their journey as Stepahne, Steve and the crew set out on a four-week adventure across the Northern Territories, South Australia and Queensland the following day.

The WorldRiderZ will return to New South Wales in August before flying to Kuala Lumpur to continue the epic journey across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, eventually crossing into Europe in October. The WorldRiderZ will undertake this epic ride on KTM 990 Adventure Motorcycles, world-acclaimed desert bikes that have proven capable of marathon rides in the harshest of terrain, including the Dakar Rally.

Discovery Networks has acquired the resulting documentary series of the WorldRiderZ journey for broadcast throughout the Asia-Pacific. A five-person production crew will create multiplatform content for the network, including a 6-episode sixty-minute series shot in HD to premiere on the network in 2011.

Major sponsors for WorldRiderZ include Woolworths, Panasonic, Malaysia Airlines, TechHead and KTM. Other supporters include L’Oreal, Mapworld, Advanced Airbrush, ASN, BaltiKamber, Bondi Gym, Continental Tyres, Genzyme, Guerlain, L’Occitane, Look Design Visual Merchandising, Mobil 1, NoLan Helmets, monSTEREOmusic and countless volunteers who have rallied behind Stephane and Steve to make the WolrdRiderZ journey a reality.

“Without the generous support of companies like Woolworths, Panasonic, Malaysia Airlines, KTM, Techhead and numerous volunteers we would be unable to complete and fully document this journey,” said Stephane Etienne. “We’re thankful for their commitment and hope other companies and individuals will dig deep into their pockets and support the WorldRiderZ mission to eradicate CKD.”

Steve Thais added, “I’ve known Stephane for a long time, and like all his friends I am inspired and motivated by his commitment to help eradicate CKD. When he suggested I join him on this journey, I couldn’t pass up the chance to help my mate and, hopefully, make a real difference for people with kidney disease.”

Stephane and Capucine Etienne’s son, Ilhan, was born with hypoplastic (underdeveloped) kidneys at Sydney Children’s Hospital on 4 April 2009. Motivated by their need for support and information, Stephane came up with the concept of WorldRiderZ to help families all over the world dealing with the diagnosis and prognosis of CKD.

For more information or to make a donation to the WorldriderZ, please visit worldriderz.com. Private donations benefit the WorldRiderZ not-for-profit fund and go directly toward the WorldRiderZ goal of raising AU$5 million dollars for CKD research at Sydney Children’s Hospital and the development of the web-based database for Renal and Urology medical professionals.

All donations over AU$2 are tax-deductible and can be made via the website or at any Westpac Bank within Australia. Supporters can also join the WorldRiderZ Facebook page at facebook.com/worldriderz or follow the adventure on Twitter at twitter.com/worldriderz.

Discovery Channel, the flagship network of Discovery Communications, is devoted to creating the highest quality nonfiction programming in the world and remains one of the most dynamic networks on television. First launched in 1985, Discovery Channel now reaches more than 167 million subscribers in Asia-Pacific. Globally, Discovery Channel is one of the world’s most widely distributed television brands, reaching 379 million cumulative subscribers in over 180 countries in 39 languages. It offers viewers an engaging line-up of high-quality non-fiction entertainment from blue-chip nature, science and technology, ancient and contemporary history, adventure, cultural and topical documentaries.

Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) is the world’s number one nonfiction media company reaching more than 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers in over 180 countries. Discovery empowers people to explore their world and satisfy their curiosity through 100-plus worldwide networks, led by Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, Discovery Science and Discovery HD, as well as leading consumer and educational products and services, and a diversified portfolio of digital media services including HowStuffWorks.com. In Asia-Pacific, seven Discovery brands reach 466 million cumulative subscribers in 32 countries with programming customized in 11 languages.