Big turnout for Giant’s Causeway Sportive event

A competitor in the Causeway Sportive makes his way through The Dark Hedges. Picture by Warren McConnaughie.
A competitor in the Causeway Sportive makes his way through The Dark Hedges. Picture by Warren McConnaughie.

A SUCCESSFUL Giant’s Causeway Sportive event has taken place with a big turnout of competitors.

On Saturday 7th September, despite the weather, eleven hundred cyclists entered the third annual Giant’s Causeway Coast Sportive, a cycling event taking in the spectacular Causeway Coast and Glens of Antrim area.

The event, which is organised by Outdoor Recreation Northern Ireland in association with Chain Reaction Cycles Flagship Store Belfast, started and finished in Ballycastle, attracted over one hundred and sixty cyclists from the Republic of Ireland with fifty participants making the trip over from Great Britain. With cyclists also flying in from Germany and Australia to take part in the event Beverley Pierson from Outdoor Recreation Northern Ireland is in no doubt why this event has become so popular in such a short period of time.

Miss Pierson explains: “The Causeway Coast and Glens boasts some of the most breathtaking scenery in Ireland and there is simply no better way to enjoy this unique corner of the country than by a saddle.”

She added: “When you couple undulating coast roads with some tough climbs and exhilarating descents through the glens not to mention the gruelling Torr Head Road, for those who are seeking the maximum challenge, you know you have a winning formula. By the numbers we have seen take part in the first three years of this event, we are confident that the Giant’s Causeway Coast Sportive has firmly cemented itself on the sportive calendar in the UK and Ireland.”

With three stunning routes on offer, this year’s Giant’s Causeway Coast Sportive catered for all levels of cyclists from complete beginners to those taking part in their first long distance event and serious club cyclists looking for a tough route that would push them right to the limit. Miss Pierson concluded, “With all three routes finishing back at the Ballycastle promenade at around the same time and when the weather had dried up, the town was positively buzzing and there was a fantastic sense of achievement from all cyclists taking part across all three route distances.”

This event, which brought a welcome boost to the local economy, was fully supported by Moyle District Council. Local Chairperson, Cllr Cara McShane, said: “This is a fantastic event and yet again hundreds of people from across Ireland and further afield travelled to Ballycastle to participate this sportive. Although the weather wasn’t good, it failed to dampen the spirits of either the organisers or the hardy cyclists as they pedalled along the roads of our beautiful district. Moyle Council is proud to have supported this event and we look forward to working with the organisers again in the future.