Friday, 23, September 2016

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Completing the Peter McVerry Cycle

Talking last weekend's charity event

Eddie Keelan finished the Peter McVerry Cycle as part of the charity outreach of The Doyle Collection.

This time last year, we heard all about the Peter McVerry Cycle, the charity event that raises vital funds for young homeless people in Ireland. The Wexford-based cycle takes in 134km, and has been in operation since 1990.

Eddie Keelan completed the cycle again this year, knocking five minutes off of last year’s time! We spoke to him about his training, the day itself and how it felt to finish. 

How did the cycle this year differ to last year?

Last year was my first time doing the cycle, so I knew what to expect this time. The route was the same and the weather was fantastic. I got down to Wexford five minutes earlier this year!

How did you prepare this year?

I’m lucky enough to get the opportunity to cycle quite a bit throughout the year, including a number of races. However, I also partake in a number of charity events and it’s great to get the opportunity to take part in The Fr Peter McVerry Cycle to Wexford. My training schedule involves getting out on the bike 2 or 3 times a week, and getting plenty of rest in the days leading up to the event.

What do you do the day before a cycle?

During the day before the cycle I try to get plenty of rest in, drink plenty of fluids and eat lots of carbs (pasta and fish dishes are great!)   

How did you feel on the morning itself?

On the morning itself you are always a bit apprehensive, but I like to get there early, and carry out some last minute checks on the bike.      

Tell us about the experience this year - what was the hardest part? Is there any part of the route that sticks out in particular?

We all left UCD just before 8am and headed towards the N11. The weather was amazing which is always a bonus, but not even the weather makes the tough drag up Sugarloaf any easier! A fantastic view awaits when you get to the top, and then it’s a reasonably flat spin down to Wexford. The 10km to go sign is always a welcome sight!         

Can you tell me about the other people participating - how was the spirit in the crowd?

The crowd spirit was fantastic. Everyone had their own personal goals for the day, but collectively we were all super excited about doing our part for this amazing charity.    

How long did the cycle take you to complete? How did you feel at the finish line?

I completed the cycle in just over 4 hours. It was a fast pace into Wexford with myself and four others arriving as the first group. The legs were tired at the end, but it was all very worthwhile. We got there just after midday, and cyclists continued to arrive right up to 3pm. The atmosphere was brilliant at the finish line, where everybody shared their cycling experiences from the day, and celebrated their achievement of completing the epic 134km.           

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