Laois trio gearing up for ‘Cycle for SID’

Three daring cyclists from Portlaoise are putting the final preparations in place for a 750-kilometre cycle from La Rochelle, France back to Portlaoise for the Sports Inclusion Disability Programme.

The intrepid trio, Mary Callanan, Andrew Cremin and Brian Bonham have spent many hours training for the event and they will cycle from La Rochelle and along the coast of Poitou-Charentes and Brittany before crossing the Irish Sea by ferry and finishing their cycle from Rosslare to Portlaoise.

The keen cyclists will raise money for the Sports Inclusion Disability programme in Laois Sports Partnership, a programme that aims to promote increased participation in Sport and Physical Activity for people with disabilities in Laois.

Mary, Brian and Andrew will cover approximately 750km over seven days. The trio will begin their ride on Wednesday, September 11 and aim to cycle a gruelling 100 to 130 km each day.

Commenting on the cycle, Garrett Culliton, Sports Inclusion Disability Officer in the LSP said it was a vital fundraising event.

“This cycle is a fantastic opportunity to raise much needed funds for the Sports Inclusion Disability Programme. The programme is part funded by the Irish Sports Council with the remaining 50% funding having to be raised locally by the Laois Sports Partnership.”

Over 400 people with disabilities in County Laois benefit directly by joining in the different sports and physical activities made available. With the assistance of 250 volunteers, they run programmes including; tandem cycling, wheelchair basketball, soccer, athletics and children’s activity camps to name but a few.

When the cyclists reach Cherbourg on the last day of the trip, they will catch a ferry back to Rosslare. Laois Sports Partnership is calling on all cycling clubs around the county to get involved by participating in the cycle from Carlow to Portlaoise with Mary, Andrew and Brian on the last leg of their trip on the September 18 as they make their way home where they will be welcomed back by friends and family in O’ Loughlins Hotel, Portlaoise.

KC Sports are also involved with the team’s sponsorship by supplying the ‘Cycle for SID’ jerseys that Mary, Brian and Andrew will wear proudly when completing this cycle challenge.

Caroline Myers, Laois Sports Partnership commented, “We would also like to thank our co-sponsors The Leinster Express for covering the event, Jet Print Tullamore for supplying the raffle tickets, O’Loughlin’s Hotel who are hosting the welcome-home party, Supreme Sports for providing the cyclists with Sports Nutrition packs and Aidan Colgan from Colgan Sports who kindly donated a Trek 1.1 Racing Bike with a value of €900.”

The Laois trio have been doing as much cycling as they can to prepare for the trip and have already collected almost €3000 in sponsorship from friends, family and other supporters.

A raffle will be held in aid of ‘Cycle for SID’, which includes fantastic prizes such as the Trek 1.1 Racing Bike for all those cycling enthusiasts and a round of golf for four people including buggies followed by lunch in the Club House in The Heritage, Killenard is also up for grabs. Tickets are €20 and can be purchased from the cyclists and the Laois Sports Partnership Office.

Mary Callanan, stated, “It’s a great challenge that we are looking forward to. It is a long way but we really enjoy cycling and feel this is a great opportunity to raise money!”

To support the efforts of the cyclists and make a donation you can visit: or You can also follow the cyclist’s journey on the LSP Facebook page, Cycle for SID Facebook page and The Leinster Express website, where Brian Bonham will be uploading images, videos and a daily blog from France.

For more details contact Laois Sports Partnership on 057 8671248. Tel: 057 – 8671248 or Email: