Roscommon man, Shane Blackweir, is part of a group of fifteen amateur cyclists from Dublin-based tech company, Qualtrics, who have taken off on a ten-day cycling challenge across 1,500kms of the Wild Atlantic Way in a bid to reach their €1 million goal for Breakthrough Cancer Research.
The group will power their way from Mizen Head in the south all the way to Ireland’s most northerly, Malin Head, arriving this Sunday (August 8th) in the Ride2AMillion fundraiser, as part of Qualtrics’ ‘5 For The Fight’ series. The company launched the fundraising organisation in 2017 and has so far raised €950,000 in Ireland in the fight against cancer.
To date, the organization has funded twenty-one cancer researchers, including the hiring of three research fellows as part of the Dermot Costello Cancer Immunology Fellowship — launched in honour Qualtrics’ EMEA Chairman, Dermot Costello who passed away from bowel cancer in January 2018.
“At Qualtrics, we’re deeply committed to doing everything in our power to help eradicate cancer,” said Qualtrics cyclist and Roscommon native Shane Blackweir.
“In our journey to €1 million, we have done everything from participating in the world’s largest virtual high five chain, to a virtual 5k race with more than 5,000 participants around the world. Now, we’re taking on the toughest challenge so far”.
Co-organiser of the event Tim Farmer is no stranger to fundraising himself after cycling 800kms in a similar challenge from his home in Naas, County Kildare, to Bristol, England last summer: “We’ve chosen a route that’s almost three times longer than the direct one, but it’s also one of the most beautiful routes in the world so we’re going to be taking it all in at every stage.
“It’s been a tough 18 months for charities everywhere, with a sharp decline in the fundraising they rely on, so we’re keen to do our bit and put in the miles to keep the momentum going in our fight against cancer,” he said.
Along their route, which takes in Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Galway, Mayo, Sligo, Fermanagh and Donegal, the 15-strong team of cyclists will be joined by four support cars and will cycle up to 170kms a day over the ten-day event.
You can find out more about the event and how to donate at ride2amillion.com, or follow their progress on social media through #Ride2amillion.