Over one thousand cyclists are planning to help a national cancer charity in raising over £200,000 at the Etape Loch Ness this year.
General entry to the 66-mile closed road sportive, which takes place on April 23, sold out in a record 50 hours. Spaces reserved for Macmillan charity riders – the official charity of the event – filled up soon after.
The capacity of the race increased to 5,200 individual places in 2017, which means that more cyclists than ever before are utilising the event to raise funds for the Macmillan cause.
Event director Malcolm Sutherland commented: “Every year we are shocked by the generosity and determination of Etape Loch Ness participants. Those who have decided to use the event to raise money for charity are truly inspirational. Their passion for fundraising is second to none; we are incredibly proud to provide a platform for their efforts.
“The feedback we get from cyclists every year is that the route around Loch Ness provides one of the most scenic rides in the country. One participant said that although he had cycled in some of the most amazing locations around the world, it was Loch Ness that really took his breath away.
“Macmillan Cancer Support has been our official charity partner since the event began in 2014; our riders have raised an incredible £444,220 so far. We look forward to another successful event in 2017 and wish all fundraisers luck in their effort to raise money for a variety of worthwhile causes.”
The money raised at the Etape Loch Ness race will go towards providing specialist nurses in the highlands, as well as providing financial support for cancer sufferers and their families.
Jessie Longhurst, the challenge events programme manager for Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “Etape Loch Ness is a highlight of Macmillan Cancer Support’s challenge events calendar in Scotland. We are thrilled to be the charity partner once again for 2017. Over 800 Macmillan riders took to the closed roads of the world-famous loch in 2016, raising over £190,000 to support people affected by cancer.
“We have over 1,000 people riding for Team Macmillan in the 2017 race. Every single rider that crosses the finish line for Macmillan helps ensure that we can keep providing our vital services so that no one has to face cancer alone. With 2.5 million people in the UK currently living with cancer; this number set to rise to four million by 2030. Taking part in this event is more important than ever.”