Connemara tour is enjoyable trip

Connemara tour is enjoyable trip

6 June 2018

HARDY members of Kilmegan VC recently took on an epic challenge when they took part in the Tour of Connemara. 

This event was talked about for months and the preparation was not too bad until three weeks before the event.

With a few excuses starting to rumble around the group Sean said we will all be grand if we stick together and ride the 140 kilometre route as a unit. 

Friday morning came early with John and Joan chatting about what way they were going to tackle the course and that was even before we had left Castlewellan.

Caroline had to be picked up in Ballynahinch first and then we were off for Connemara. Martin McCourt, a member of Shimna Wheelers, joined us in Connemara and once everyone had arrived in the village of Clifden and signed on, we set out for our base for the next two days, the Connemara Sands Hotel — this was a luxurious base with its fancy decor and and spectacular surroundings. 

Saturday finally arrived and it was all go with Joan and Caroline looking for their last minute snacks before we set off around the picturesque mountains and the Wild Atlantic Way. 

The wind was strong, but this didn’t deter Martin and John, who set the pace. It wasn’t too long until the miles were clocking up and 60 miles later it was time to refuel with water, bananas, sweets and sandwiches.

Back on the bikes again and the pain train started for the last 30 miles as the organisers had left the hills to the last third of the course. With some tired legs and a certain two ladies giving off about hot feet, we suffered on until we had completed the course and arrived safely back at the station house in Clifden where we all received a rapturous welcome and a finishers’ medal.

That was last weekend completed and Sunday past was of to a flyer with Sean getting some sneaky training in around Donegal while he was working apparently.

Caroline took Wednesday evening’s spin with Mary, Barry, Charlene and Brian going towards Hilltown, Bryansford and Castlewellan , 

Sunday and it was time to get the Kilmegan crew to Banbridge to do the TVR Sportive in aid of Daisy Lodge.

The gang of Caroline, Danny, Michael Mc, Ciaran, JR, Mary and Sean all met at the library and decided to ride to Banbridge RFC to sign on for this event.

On arrival we were all greeted with a warm welcome from the host club with tea and coffee in abundance and had time for a quick chitchat before the motorcycle marshals said it was time to go.

The weather was fantastic and the craic was good and with a few challenges put out along the way. The pace was moderate and TVR kept the groups as tight as possible, but once Rathfriland Hill beckoned, this became impossible as the groups just stretched apart and it was everyone for themselves to try and make the summit of the town.

\With the legs screaming and lungs burning we all regrouped with the members of TVR at the top and set of through Hilltown and down the back Bryansford Road, through Newcastle and out the Dundrum Road to the Twelve Arches car park for some refreshments from the ladies of Daisy Lodge. 

Refuelling complete, it was time for the last leg home. Back into Castlewellan and the craic had started about the day’s events and last week’s adventures. 

This was truly a memorable few days for Kilmegan Velo Club. Well done to all who participated, keep up the good work and we will see you all tonight at 6.30pm in Castlewellan top square.