Former Australian pace bowler Jason Gillespie spends six months of his year coaching in England, and the Australian summer coaching the Adelaide Strikers. His first family experience of camping was during Britain’s 2018 heatwave, but unfortunately, when they set up their tent, they broke the drought, and it bucketed down.
There are much nicer conditions for his four-wheel drive adventure on the eastern slopes of the Adelaide Hills, at Eagle View 4WD track. It’s a rough, but very scenic self-drive through a sanctuary and conservation area.
Dizzy may have earned his nickname thanks to famous jazz trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie, but it’s also appropriate because as Kimberley discovers, he’s not a huge fan of heights. That makes it all the more impressive that he nails some pretty heady hill climbs behind the wheel.
The full track takes about three hours to cover, and there are some awesome views and a number of good spots to pitch a tent. Eagle View 4WD track is open to bookings for weekends and public holidays. Four-wheel drive and camping fees fund conservation work on the property.
As he drives the track, Dizzy shares some interesting information about himself. Firstly, that he’s been a committed vegan, since watching a documentary about animal welfare that’s called “Earthlings”. He says, “not partaking in animal products, and just being a bit kinder in this world, it just made sense to me.”
Dizzy also reveals that during his playing days he developed a routine that bordered on superstition. “I had all quirky little things, from how many times I twirled the bat in my hand, how many steps I take before I give my hat to the umpire. If I was running I’d jog to the umpire to give him my hat, but I had to make sure that I wouldn’t have taken 13 steps before I handed him my cap.”
Dizzy’s certainly not the only cricketer to follow a superstition, but it seems there was a long list of procedures he would have to run through before he hurtled a ball down the pitch.