About 100 motorbike riders in the region will hit the highway on Sunday along with thousands of others around the country in the hope of driving a conversation about mental health. “Black dog” was a term used by Winston Churchill to describe his depression. Black Dog Ride is a motorbike community that works to raise awareness about depression and suicide prevention through an annual “One Dayer” ride. This year’s co-ordinator Rob Woods has been taking part in the Denmark Black Dog Ride for almost a decade. “Initially, I joined just for the motorbike rides, and then I realised the depth of it,” he said. “The whole idea is to get people talking, raise the awareness and reduce the stigma.” Mr Woods said the cause was close to his heart. “My wife suffers from depression and anxiety,” he said. “And hopefully, if she’s feeling up to it, she’s going come on the back of my bike and ride with me.” The riders will leave Denmark’s Koorabup Park in the morning and travel through Mt Barker and Porongurup, before heading to Albany’s Middleton Beach. From there, they will ride along York Street then return to Denmark. Mr Woods said he was a little concerned about forecast rain after accidents on the wet slippery bitumen along Chester Pass Road during last year’s event. “We’re certainly hoping for dry weather, that’s for sure,” he said. “We don’t want a repeat of what happened last time with three people going down.” “We’ll be making people well aware to be cautious during our pre-ride talk.” Mr Woods said the ride’s proceeds would go towards mental health first-aid course fees for locals.