The Wicklow 200 is a non-competitive one-day cycle ride that takes place every June and attracts over 3000 cyclists from many different countries. Established in 1982 the Wicklow 200, as the name suggests, covers over 200 kilometres around Co. Wicklow, taking in most of the famous hills that have made Wicklow a major international cycling destination over the years.
The shorter Wicklow 100 Challenge takes place on the same day, and shares most of its route with the Wicklow 200. The event is famous for its relaxed, friendly and welcoming atmosphere and superb organisation. The event has been organised each year since it started in 1982 by the Irish Veteran Cyclists Association. Two members of The Blackwater Triathlon Club, Ashleigh Byrne and Karen McNamara headed to Wicklow on Sunday to take part in this event. Karen completed the 100km challenge and Ashleigh managed to survive the 200km route. Starting at Bray Emmets GAA Club the route took the riders to Enniskerry, Old Long Hill, Roundwood, Laragh, the Wicklow Gap, Hollywood, Baltinglass, Aghavannagh, Slieve Maan,Glenmalure, Drumgoff, Rathdrum, south through Ballinaclash before turning north for Glenealy and Ashford when the route takes the riders through Newcastle, Kilcoole, Greystones, up the short climb at Windgates before cutting west to Enniskerry and on to the finish at Bray Emmets . The Wicklow 100 veered left in Laragh and headed straight to Rathdrum before returning on the same route as the Wicklow 200. This was a very challenging , starting with a 4.6% climb right out of the Bray Emmets clubhouse! The climbs continued all day, taking in the beautiful Wicklow Gap and Slieve Mann and loads more in between. There were 2 food stops, at 75 and 140km. The last 60km home was especially tough, with surprise climbs all the way as well as a brisk headwind to contend with. Ashleigh finished the cycle, just shy of 3000m climbing in 202.5km, in around 7 hours and 45 mins. Well done to both Ashleigh and Karen on the day. This was once again a really well run and friendly event. The I.V.C.A, supported by Wicklow County Council and The Irish Red Cross, had approximately 200 volunteers helping out on the day providing first-aid cover, mechanical breakdown cover, route marshalling, car parking, changing rooms, showers and refreshment stops along the way and at the finish in Bray Emmets GAA Club. All finishers were presented with a special Wicklow 200 medal.