Sunday September 11th 2016: Sunday morning a group of 70+ cyclists set off on a 32km spin from Loreto Hockey Club in Rathfarnham to Enniskerry and back in aid of Caroline’s Battle to Seattle. Caroline Smyth, a past Beaufort girl, is suffering from Lymes disease. She requires costly treatment with specialists in Seattle to help in her fight against the disease.
The weather was on our side (as if we ever had any doubt – thanks Sr.Maria and the Child of Prague, your reputation is still intact!)
We had a mix of all abilities, from semi-pros to Loreto Flyers to novices on a bike for the first time in 20+ years. Shout out to our youngest cyclist Cian (1) who had no bother getting up Lamb Doyle’s hill as his dad did all the work! Lycra, helmets, bikes, and padded pants were borrowed from sisters, cousins, neighbours – you name it!
As safety was top priority for the day, cyclists set off in 10 minute waves, after signing in with the registration team of Nuala, Gemma, Sinead, Trish, Gwen, Ciara, Marg, Annemarie and Linda. Then they were all rounded up impeccably by Sally Ann Fanagan, and smiled for a photo taken by Wendy… And off they went!
Thank you to our registration team, photographer Wendy, SallyAnn, and all the marshals in each wave!
At the halfway point in the Enniskerry community hall they were directed where to go by flag-waving Roisin Ryan. They were welcomed with open arms, a biscuit, smiles and a warm drink by Suzanne, Eimear & Noreen. Thanks Ladies!
Meanwhile in Beaufort the busy bees back at base camp were hard at it setting up for the return of the cyclists. Thanks to Grainne Cregan for all the kitchen work, endless cups of tea poured & ensuring the biscuits were in supply.
After returning from their Sunday spin the cyclists were greeted with a warm reception, a loudhailer siren, and a BBQ/beer! Eimear Grealy was on hand to capture the fresh-faced flyers as they returned.
HUGE THANKS to local butcher George King who supplied the top notch meat on the day. Also thank you to our chefs Berni, Orla, Barbara (although rumour has it she disappeared for half the morning!), Brian & Hannah Dalton who didnt manage to poison anyone (phew!).
Big congrats go to Deirdre McEntee who was the first woman back. Sylvia had full intentions of being first lady back but unfortunately she didn’t get very far when her chain broke on the Grange Road!! Not to fear, Dave our rescue driver was on hand to be her knight in shining armour and whisked her back to get a replacement bike, and dropped her back to catch up with the gang.
The tunes were belting out all day courtesy of resident DJ Fiona!
The day was superbly organised from start to finish and it would not have been the success it was without the help of numerous volunteers, and the generosity and support of all who fundraised, cycled, threw money in the buckets, and donated online. It was great to see so many from the hockey club, junior parents and friends turn out for the event.
Major kudos need to go to the organising committee of Fiona, Sinead, Fiona, Sheena, Petrina, Wendy & Gemma but one individual in particular – Bronnie. Laura Fanning summed it up when she said ‘You know Bronnie, I was just sitting having a wee thinking about you” (which was said in the nicest possible way!) In poor Laura’s defence, she meant about how much good Bronnie does for others!
The total is not finalised yet but we are hoping we will be close to €8,000.
If you wish to support you can also donate online.