14th May 2015
Cycle against Suicide - The Final Leg
And so to the final leg. Whether you were like Joe McDaid from Heuston who cycled the full 14 days of the event, or one of a much larger group who participated in one day's cycling only, it was a special occasion.
There were cyclists as far as the eye could see at Loreto College Mullingar where the estimated 1,000 strong peleton assembled.
One of the real positives of the event was its involvement of the communities it visited, and local schools in particular. The central message "It's OK not to feel OK, and it's absolutely OK to ask for help" was delivered through an event that was inclusive and enjoyable for all.
Out on the road, there was a great welcome for the cyclists through the streets of Mullingar, and as we passed through towns like Kinnegad, Enfield, Kilcock, Maynooth and Leixlip.
The pace ensured that cyclists of all levels could manage, and in keeping with the spirit of the event, help was at hand when the going got tough.
At Johnstown Bridge, our food stop, a local band created a fun and welcoming atmosphere, and audience participation quickly followed. Showing there is no end to the rail team's talents, Dundalk Station Manager Anthony Monaghan took to the stage for a showstopping performance of Oh Beautiful Meath!
The toughest leg was - naturally - after food had been consumed, but a quick rest stop at Leixlip Intel gave everyone the energy needed to continue as did the approach of the finish line. To travel down Dublin city centre's quays with the roads closed and crowds cheering as you pass is a memory that will stay with all who took part. Before we knew it, we were taking the right turn into RTÉ Donnybrook, when word arrived that burgers were waiting for us on a barbecue. Bliss! And all things considered, the team were looking quite well!
So to all who took part, to all who helped organise and marshal, to all who hosted cyclists, and to schools and businesses who welcomed the cyclists and involved themselves in spreading the crucial message of the event, well done. And for our part, we hope to be back next year with an even bigger team and to help break the cycle of suicide in Ireland.