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Cyclists invited to gear up for annual Fort2Fort Charity Cycle Saturday, 29th October

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Pictured at the launch of the forthcoming Fort2Fort Charity Cycle, which takes place around Cork Harbour on Saturday, 29th October, are Olympian Rob Heffernan; Deirdre Finn, Head of Fundraising, Mercy Hospital Foundation; and Jim O’Connor, Chairman, Fort2Fort Committee with Tom Cotter and Martin Adams, Fort2Fort Committee Members. Fort2Fort will once again raise vital funds for the Mercy Hospital Foundation, four Cork City and County Lions Clubs, and Camden Fort Meagher Restoration Fund. Registration is now open for the cycle which offers a choice of exciting routes covering 40km, 60km, 85km and 120km. For full route and registration details see www.mercyhospitalfoundation.ie. (Picture:Adrian O’Herlihy)

The 11th annual Fort2Fort Charity Cycle will take place on Saturday, 29th October, with a choice of distances around Cork Harbour to suit cyclists of all abilities. Olympian Rob Heffernan was on hand to launch the popular cycle that will once again raise vital funds for the Mercy Hospital Foundation, four Cork City and County Lions Clubs, and Camden Fort Meagher Restoration Fund. 

Fort2Fort normally takes place early in the year, but following on from the success of the cycle late in the season last year, this year’s cycle will take place over the October Bank Holiday weekend, with exciting routes covering 40km, 60km, 85km and 120km. 

The annual fundraiser has been hugely successful since it began, and has firmly established itself in the calendar of Cork’s cycling enthusiasts, as well as welcoming cyclists from 14 different counties across Ireland over the years. In 2022 Fort2Fort raised €44,650; and since its inception, over 4,000 cyclists have participated, raising €334,650 for the local beneficiaries.

Speaking at the launch of Fort2Fort 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 continued “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 9th, after an illness bravely fought with great courage and dignity.” 

Deirdre Finn, Head of Fundraising at the Mercy Hospital Foundation, 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. To date €1.35 million has been raised for the Cancer CARE Centre; however the project is expected to cost €2.4 million, so the focus must now shift in an effort to raise a further €1 million to run the services.”

Cork County Council is once again the main sponsor for the event.

The entry fee for Fort2Fort is €55 for those that register 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 back to Camden Fort Meagher. 

For full route and registration details see  www.mercyhospitalfoundation.ie.

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