Westportif which was officially launched by Minister Michael Ring a few months ago has gathered huge momentum and is now set to be the biggest ever cycling weekend held in the West.
The West of Ireland’s most spectacular leisure cycle takes place on the weekend of the 17 to 19th July 2015 and is part of the ŠKODA Cycle Series in association with Independent News & Media. Nicknamed “Ring of the Reek” the Westportif routes circumnavigate Croagh Patrick, which is known locally as “The Reek”. Two distances are on offer – 80km to suit novices and 160km for more seasoned cyclists.
“Westport to be swarmed by cyclist on a Wheelie good weekend.
This is the third year of the hugely successful Westportif which attracted over 800 cyclists last year and is confidently expected top the 1,200 mark this year. Organisers on behalf of Western Lakes CC and Westport Covey wheelers sees huge growth potential for the event, saying, “From the very first year Westportif proved to have a winning formula of a perfect town base and an incredible selection of superb cycling routes for different levels. Entries are increasing each year, with enquiries pouring in from all over Ireland and further afield. The level of support from organisations in the town has been exceptional.”
The Westportif starts and finishes in the lovely heritage town of Westport, an ideal location for visiting cyclists with ample accommodation and support facilities (beware accommodation is filling fast). The event is just part of a weekend cycling festival which includes a family-friendly Bike Buffet on Friday, the ultra exciting Criterium Race around the closed streets of Westport Town Centre on Saturday evening, and a novel Garden Cycle on Sunday. Hundreds of tourists from around Ireland and the UK are expected to flock into the popular town for the family cycling festival.
Choice of Spectacular Routes
The shorter 80km route is reasonably flat and is very suitable for novice and family cyclists. It hugs the scenic Clew Bay coastline town of Louisburgh and continues straight to Killeen village with views of Clare and Inishturk islands and the famous beaches of Silver and white strands this is surly panoramic cycling at its best before turning inland through spectacular Doo Lough Valley to Delphi Resort for our main food stop after the lovely Aashleigh Falls awaits. The return to Westport is via the Erriff Valley on the main road.
The 160km cyclists will begin with the others, but turn right at Aashleigh towards Leenane village, along Killary Fjord then inland through the Inagh Valley to Recess and Maam Cross before heading back to Westport via Lough Mask and Tourmakeady, there is a sting in the tale with Lally’s mountain coming with 30k to go. This is a much hillier route with 6 categorised climbs. It is also a magnificently scenic route which is particularly attractive to cyclists from abroad. Both routes are fully supported with water and food stops along the way.
The first 1500 get a special edition long sleeve Tech top, Skoda goodie bag, energy product from High 5 and Nutri Science and also the chance to buy an event cycling jersey. The event’s charity partner is the hard working Mayo Roscommon Hospice, donation can also be made on the day.
The Westportif After party promises to be epic with event footage on video display at the Clewbay hotel from early evening, music, disco and craic to be followed till late into the night.
The event is been supported locally by Westport Smarter travel, Destination Westport, FitScience, The Mayonews, NutriSci, Delphi Adventure Resort, The Clewbay Hotel, High5, Westport Leisure park, Monaghans Skoda dealers and INM Regional’s.
For further information on this outstanding leisure cycle see the webpage www.westportif.ie or find Westportif on Facebook and Twitter.