UCD’s Science Society completed their annual cycle to Galway in aid of Crumlin Children’s Hospital earlier this month. Thirty students took part in the cycle, held on February 3rd and 4th.
Two members of UCD’s Cycle Club, two Order of Malta ambulances, a bus, a mechanic and Garda escorts accompanied the cyclists at various stages of the route.
Training for the 208.3km cycle began in October. Organiser of the cycle, Jenny O’Dwyer said that she “made sure they were organised, just to get their fitness up to a certain level. It’s more for the confidence of the cyclists themselves.”
O’Dwyer recommends that students undertake the challenge next year, “we would say it’s a great weekend just purely because it’s such a good bonding weekend … by the end of the weekend, because you’re cycling in groups … you really bond with people and get to know people quite well.”
The cycle brings in on average €9,000 to €10,000 every year, though a final amount for this year has not yet been calculated as sponsorship is not due in until the end of March. O’Dwyer explains that due to large sum raised every year, “it’s a really big event for the Science Society.”
Each cyclist is required to raise at least €450 in order to take part in the cycle. €120 of this amount goes towards food, accommodation and the renting of a bike and helmet, as well as hiring a bus and mechanic.
“The main things in the beginning that people are very reserved about are first of all, the money, but we would say we’re very hands on about helping you organise events to raise it yourself. It’s not going to come out of your own pocket. Then second of all, the fitness level; it’s not a race, it’s just a group of people having the craic, getting to Galway. We provide spin classes … It’s not a competition. It’s just a bit of fun.”
The weather conditions this year were much better than those encountered by last year’s cyclists, “it was atrocious … even the pro cyclist who was with us at the time was like ‘we don’t even train in this kind of weather’.
“I consider it a success, the fact that everyone managed to cycle into Galway, there were no injuries along the way … and we did seem to collect a good bit of money in Galway.”
Science Day is expected to go ahead on February 16th with events such as a petting zoo, ‘Pie the Lecturer’, and ‘Shave or Dye’ taking place.