Entries for this year’s ‘Into The West’ charity cycle are now being accepted by members of the Lakeside Wheelers in Mullingar.
“Originally a one-off event, it is now in its 18th year, and has grown from 30 riders to 300 this year,” sad Joe Duffy, spokesman for the Wheelers.
The challenge is to cycle the 150km each way from Mullingar to Galway and back on Saturday September 8, and Sunday, September 9.
There will be five groups on the road with backup vehicles and motorbikes, in addition to Civil Defence and Garda support, with one stop at Ballinasloe for about half an hour.
The first group will leave the Mullingar Park Hotel at 9am, with four more staggered starts between then and 11am.
“The strength and experience of riders graduates from group one to group five, so it’s important to choose the correct group to be in, and not to over extend yourself,” said Mr Duffy.
“Remember, if you find that the group you are in is not fast enough you can always drop back to a stronger group at the stop in Ballinasloe, however if you start with a group which is too strong and get dropped you must get into the support van and be dropped up the road ahead of the group,” he warned.
The first 150 entrants will receive an attractive cycling jersey; however if you already have one from last year you can help to cut costs by passing up on getting one this year.
Participants will be provided with B&B, plus evening dinner, in the Carlton Hotel which has a leisure centre.
Entry fee is €60 and participants must then raise a minimum of €200 sponsorship for Breast Cancer Research.