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Cycling is a growing sport and over the past few years, we have begun to see the number of events grow massively! Here are some of the events, big and small, long and short, that we think you should consider for your 2023 calendar!
Many of these events have not opened registration at the time of publishing this article. We will update the article as much as we can but for the most relevant information visit the event’s website!
Date: 11 June 2023
An icon in the cycling community the Wicklow 200 was established in 1982. The 40th edition will take place on Sunday 11 June 2023, starting in Bray, Co Wicklow. It is looking likely to be a great day out for those that love riding their bikes! The Wicklow 200 takes in many of the most iconic climbs in Ireland’s ‘Garden County’ in an event that is among the most arduous and most revered annual events on the Irish and international cycling calendar. If you don’t feel up to the full 200km ride, you can still get involved by tackling the Wicklow 100 Challenge event that takes place on the same day. The 100 shares many of the same roads as the 200 and is still an epic challenge taking in the incredible atmosphere and scenery of this event.
Entry to this event will open in December 2023. Register your interest for Wicklow 200 2023:
Find out more
Date: 27 May 2023
Last year, we took part in the Ring of Beara Cycle, Kenmare. This cycle is, for good reason, one of the most popular cycling events in the country. Last year we were blessed with one of the early summer clear days. It was absolutely stunning an we got lots of messages from jelaous viewers wishing they had signed up! Entry for this event opens in November and is so popular, it’s likely to sell out in days. So make sure you get your crew assembled and entry purchased soon! Cyclists embark on a challenging 110km or 140km route which encompasses the magnificent mountains, valleys, and the rugged coastline of the Beara Peninsula. Cyclists pass through picturesque and quaint towns, enjoying food, music (the drummers on Caha Pass were a personal favourite of ours last year!) and chat at the food stations dotted along the route. Not only does the event make a significant, positive impact on the local economy it also has the added advantage of helping to support local charities each year. In 2019, €53,000 in 2019 which saw six local charities benefit.
Find out more and sign up
Date: 15 April 2023
Cost: 55km – €45, 120km – €65
Dingle in Co Kerry and the surrounding area is an Irish cycling paradise! As spring is in full swing cyclists take to the road around this peninsula to test themselves, enjoy the epic views of the Atlantic and support local charities around Dingle. You can choose between a 120km and a 55km cycle, both of which take in some spectacular roads. Entry to Ride Dingle is planned to open in early December 2023 so fingers on the ready!
If you would like to receive a priority link to register for Ride Dingle 2023, please express your interest now via the link
Date: June 2023
Every year heart disease and stroke charity Croí hosts its Corrib Charity Cycle. With 3 route options ranging from 40km to 110km there is something for everyone to sink their teeth into. The cycle takes place around the western lakes of Galway and Mayo and the route provides some stunning scenery as you pedal through this landscape. By participating in this race, you are supporting the much needed services that Croí provides. You will also receive food after the event as well as some limited edition merch!
Organised by the Burren Cycling Club, the Tour de Burren has been a staple on the Irish cycling calendar since 2009! In 2019 Cycling Ireland rated the Tour de Burren 9.7/10 as a leisure cycle event. The event has been cancelled for the past few years but we are really hoping to see this on back on the calendar in 2023!
The Tour de Burren is recognised as one of the must-do cycle sportives in the country. What sets this event apart is the grassroots feel to the event, the unique scenery and the iconic smoked salmon and brown bread at the food stops! We can‘t wait to see it return in 2023!
Date: 15 July 2023*
This is the most southerly sportive in Ireland and takes in some of the most stunning sections of the Wild Atlantic Way, including the Mizen and Sheep’s Head Peninsulas in beautiful West Cork around. There are 3 routes for you to choose from at this event: a brand new 65km route, a challenging 100km route and the full 140km route. All 3 of the routes start and finish in Bantry which has plenty of pubs for your post-cycle refreshments!
See Route Map.
The ŠKODA Ring of Clare Cycle will be hosted in Ennis, Co. Clare in July 2023 (date tbc). The event has two route options for cyclists – the Ring of Clare 160km and the Ring of Clare 120km.
The routes include the best of what Clare has to offer cyclists and visitors. Cyclists will cruise along the Wild Atlantic Way, travel through the spectacular Loop Head peninsula and return along by the beautiful Shannon Estuary waters. The event takes in some of Clare’s best known local cycling landmarks. A grandstand finish and the renowned Clare welcome will be waiting for cyclists .
2023 Event Registration opens on January 1st.
The ŠKODA Tour de Conamara is a leisure cycling sportive with the choice of 140km or 80km routes (view routes) across Connemara. Both routes bring cyclist through some of the finest coastal, lakelands, valleys and mountainous landscape along the Wild Atlantic Way. The event fills up every year within 24 hours of registration opening.
Date: 20 May 2023*
The first mixed terrain event on our must-do cycling events of 2023, this unique cycling event offers 3 different distances to suit different levels of expertise or experience!
Ride The Classic is a one-of-a-kind leisure cycling event that takes you through East Galway’s lovely country lanes and bogs. Around one quarter of the course is made up of off-road segments on bog roads, farm paths, boreens, and manor estates.
Ride The Classic, Ireland’s only ‘classics’ style road race, provides riders a true taste of the gritty old northern European professional road races, an experience and unforgettable challenge like no other! Not one to be missed this year!
Date: 26 August 2023* – Registration will open in February
Judging by its website description, the Galway Gravel Grinder looks like it could be some craic!
“For the last few years, a few passionate souls have canvassed the beautiful off-road gems around the Galway Wind Park in County Galway. That passion, along with a devious wink and nod to our cousin—the Galway Classic—has culminated in a cycling adventure so unique it can only be described as ‘Gravel Craic’.
What is Gravel Craic? It’s a little bit of everything Ireland has to offer for a truly unique gravel cycling adventure. Forest roads. Farm roads. Boreen roads. Single track. And a whole bunch of good ‘ole gravel!”
The Galway Gravel Grinder Craic
This route is a terrific introduction to gravel cycling.
The Crush is just right!
Still get bang for your buck with 80% of the route being off-road
This route is for those truly looking to test their limits.
Date: 8 April 2023*
Taking in the iconic climbs of Slieve Mann and Shay Elliott (plus a few more) the 3 peaks challenge is organised by the South East Road Club and is an excellent day out! In addition to the challenging 107km route, there is a 70km route that cuts out some of the climbs while keeping the most challenging Shay Elliot in!
Find out more and sign up
Date: 20 August 2023
There are many AUDAX cycles (Ultra Distance) on the calendar every year that range from intense to obscene! We have included a few of our favourites to whet your appetite. Taking place in the Yeats heartland of Sligo town, pedal through the landscapes that inspired one of the countries most celebrated poets. There are 2 route choices – the epic 300km route and the awesome 400km. While both are challenging, the 300km is very similar to the 400km as the two events run parallel until 102km. The 300km then rejoins the 400km for the final 100km to the finish back in Sligo town. These grassroots events are essential for the community. They generally do not cost much to enter and are organised by individuals or clubs that love the sport.
More information: Contact Stuart on 07966255887 or by email at email@example.com
Date: Saturday 10 June 2023*
Another absolutely excellent AUDAX cycle that we hope appears on the calendar again this year is The Quiet Man 300. The Quiet Man 300 features the best scenery in the West of Ireland, featuring a large section of the Wild Atlantic Way. The route is not hilly, and regular Audaxers would even call it flat. However, this far west, the weather can be severe. On a good day it is an easy 300 – on a bad day it is a tough one. Leaving Westport, the route takes in the Delphi Valley, Killary Fjord, Connemara National Park, Ballycroy National Park and the Great Western Greenway. If you want to give an ultra cycle a go, this is the one we recommend as your first 300km!
Organiser: Seamus O’Dowd, Phone: 085 1740747
Date: May 2023*
The Wild Mayo Ultra was one of our favourite cycling events last year. There is such a buzz around these events and with 3 different levels of madness to choose from, you are likely to find your poison! The 650km is the maddest of them all and is a full lap of the county bounds of Mayo. The Furnace 300 km takes in all of the coastal roads and iconic climbs of the 650 but is achievable in daylight hours and the 200k was new for 2022, it starts after the 300k participants have gone. This challenge will test your resolve and the Mayo Coast will give you a new perspective. Test the waters and give it a go…
Date: 25 September 2023 (tbc)
Running for the past 25 years, the H&MV Charity Cycle is a lovely, uncompetitive event offering 2 distances – a 50km route and a 100km route. Both routes are very accessible to a variety of fitness levels as they are quite flat. The 100km route has less than 650m of climbing and the 50km route has exactly 300m. Known as the Slievenamon Loop, the cycle will depart from Moycarkey Borris GAA Club, Littleton, Co. Tipperary. This year the cycle is in aid of 2 incredible charities – Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind and Tipperary Hospice Movement.
Date: September 2023*
Enniskerry GAA will host their 5th annual cycle in September 2023 in aid of Pieta house. Leaving from the picturesque Wicklow village of Enniskerry, both routes will take in some great roads, all while raising funds for Pieta house!
Date: October 2023*
Cost: €75 euro (+booking fee, includes a 20 euro voucher to be used in restaurants, cafés, pubs, and shops in Kenmare)
Irish Event Highlight | Outsider.ie
Velo Kenmare is a new and exciting 135km timed cycle which took place in October 2022. Starting and finishing in Kenmare, Co Kerry, this event is designed to challenge cyclists, whatever their level. While the event has no mass start, it is timed from start to finish. And it has 4 timed ‘King Of The Mountain’ segments. This sets the event apart from the purely completion-based cycling challenges we regularly see on the calendar. This semi-competitive event would be a great option for cyclists who have never raced but want to challenge themselves and see where they stack up competitively on a very challenging course.
Many events are still reluctant to publish a date too far in advance due to the disruption of the past few years. We hope you found this list useful, if you see and “*” that means we are monitoring this information and if it changes we will update it so you always have the most up to date list of the best cycling events 2023!
By Matthew McConnell
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