THE 11th annual Fort2Fort charity cycle will take place at the end of October, with a choice of distances around Cork Harbour to suit cyclists of all abilities.
Olympian Rob Heffernan launched the popular cycle, which will raise funds for the Mercy Hospital Foundation, four Cork City and County Lions clubs, and Camden Fort Meagher Restoration Fund.
Fort2Fort is normally early in the year, but was held late in the season in 2021, so this year’s cycle will take place over the October bank holiday weekend, on October 29, with routes covering 40km, 60km, 85km, and 120km.
In 2022, Fort2Fort raised €44,650; and, since its inception, over 4,000 cyclists have participated, raising €334,650.
Jim O’Connor, chairman of Fort2Fort, said: “We look forward to welcoming back many of the cyclists who have supported our charity sportive in the past, and hope to see more new faces taking to the roads this year.
The success of Fort2Fort, year after year, has been largely due to the massive support we receive from our cyclists, so I’d encourage anyone considering participating to come join us for what promises to be a very enjoyable day, as, regardless of your level, there are routes for all abilities.”
He also paid tribute to one of the event’s late organisers: “It is with great sadness that I share the news with Fort2Fort supporters of the passing of Orla Flavin, one of Fort2Fort’s long-standing organisers. Orla, who was the district treasurer and a proud member of Cobh Lions Club, sadly passed away on September 9, after an illness bravely fought with great courage and dignity.”
Meanwhile, Deirdre Finn, the head of fundraising at the Mercy Hospital Foundation, which is one of three beneficiaries of Fort2Fort, said:
“We are honoured to be a beneficiary of Fort2Fort, and funds raised will once again go towards the new Mercy Cancer CARE Centre.
“Building works recently commenced on the property at 9 Dyke Parade, Cork, which, once complete, will provide a quiet and safe place for patients and their families to access an increasingly necessary range of services to support those affected, both directly and indirectly, by a cancer diagnosis.
“We could not have reached this milestone without those who have cycled Fort2Fort over the last number of years.”
Cork County Council is again the main sponsor.
The entry fee is €55 for registering in advance; while the entry fee on the day will be €60, so early registration is recommended. For those taking on the challenge of the 65km, 85km, or 120km routes, a food stop will be available at Bramley Lodge, before the return cycle to Camden Fort Meagher.
For full route and registration details, see https://www.mercyhospitalfoundation.ie/