A record-breaking 267 cyclists from all over the country enjoyed another winning day out after taking part in Bike Balmoral.
The annual charity event hosted at the Queen’s Scottish estate, which is in its sixth year and sponsored by Swire Oilfield Services, saw biking enthusiasts of all ages and abilities descend on the Royal grounds of Balmoral with proceeds going to CHILDREN 1st.
Split into two routes, the event offered competitive fun for all levels of cycling abilities with the winner of each category on the Swire 50km Challenge as follows: Team Challenge Neil Moir, Aaron Tranter, Luca Contessi and Mike Smith all from Swire Oilfield Services; Individual Challenge (Female) Anna Blair; Individual Challenge (Male) Dan Whitehead.
The M&G Scenic Cycle provided a separate lowland route for families and those looking to enjoy the scenery at a more leisurely pace.
Swire Oilfield Services chief operating officer, Richard Sell, who took part in the challenge, said: “This year’s Bike Balmoral was a great day out in one of Scotland’s most renowned and picturesque surroundings, with both routes offering an exciting challenge for all involved.
“I’m pleased we were able to not only help in raising vital funds for a great cause but also support in making the event the biggest in its history so far.”
Some of those attending took on the Swire 50km Challenge a new, demanding course designed for corporate teams and anyone over the age of 18. Taking place on a brand new route around the estate, the challenge saw teams from many North-East companies as well as individuals compete in a gruelling test of endurance over open moorland, through forest then a climb of 600ft between Glen Muick and Glen Gelder.
Morag Murray, Bike Balmoral event organiser, said: “The development of a new route for this year’s event offered unrivalled access to the grounds of the Balmoral estate. This opportunity helped in attracting a record-breaking number of participants making Bike Balmoral bigger and better than ever before.
It was fantastic to see so many people come together for this year’s event and raise thousands of pounds for a charity that helps build a brighter future for Scotland’s vulnerable children and families. We already have confirmed applicants for next year’s event and planning is now under way for 2014. I would encourage anyone who is looking for a challenge to consider getting involved.”
Registration of interest for next year’s Bike Balmoral is already open with organisers expecting the 2014 event to build on the success of this year. For entry information see link - www.bikebalmoral.co.uk