9 December 2008

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Cyclists Support Local Charities

The organisation of a mammoth event such as the Coastal Challenge is an all-year round affair, but this week the event organiser, Terry Nicoletti, had one of his more pleasant duties to perform: the presentation of one of the charity cheques to the Ulster Hospital. In all a cheque for £7,500 was presented to Dr Roy Harper Consultant Endocrinology and Diabetes. In fact three departments will benefit from the 2008 Coastal Challenge: Diabetes, Cardiology and Stroke Units.

This is an incredible sum, but it should be noted that such a sizeable amount of money was only possible through the valuable financial assistance of the event’s many sponsors, including the Ulsterbank Ltd and Bikeit Cycles, Grand Parade, Belfast. Over the seven years of the event a staggering sum of over £50,000 has now been raised.

At the hand-over, Terry Nicoletti praised the willing band of helpers from North Down Cycling Club who have worked hard to make this one of the biggest charity cycles in the country. He also pointed out that next year's Bangor Coastal Challenge will again be promoted by North Down Cycling Club and will take place on Sunday 21 June. Let’s hope the weather will be a little kinder next year on the seven hundred plus cyclists.

Hot Port Run

The first of the festive season frolics takes place over the next two Saturdays in the form of the Hot Port Cycles. These popular cycles will leave the clubrooms at 9am and meander through Ards and Downpatrick before returning via Strangford and the Saltwater Brig.

Mince Pie Cycle

A date for your diary will be the Mince Pie Cycle on the Saturday after Christmas (27th December). The organiser this year again is Noel Boyce who did such a fantastic job last year. Noel has booked the Marquis Hall, just off Abbey Street and is planning to have three runs this year, with a minimum of two leaders on each run, to cover the child protection issue. The distances are 2 miles, 10 miles and 25 miles. Sign on is from 9.30am with the first run 25 miles leaving at 10am, 10 mile run leaving at 10.20am and 2 mile run at 10.30am. Upon returning to the Marquis Hall, between 11am and 12.30, everyone will be welcome to some hot mince pies and warm hospitality. Noel would really appreciate the help of club members to assist in the marshalling of this very popular event.

Sojourn in Belgium

It was good to read that Rachel Mitchell is back on the bike having spent last weekend in Belgium on a Cycling Ireland track training weekend. With no indoor track in Ireland those who want to try their hand on ‘the boards’ are forced to travel to either Manchester, Cardiff or the continent. Roll on the day when an indoor track will be at hand for all local cyclists.

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