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Excitement Grows for St. Patrick’s Gortin Gold Rush
Main Event sponsor for the St Patrick’s Gortin Gold Rush, Vincent Daly of VA Generators (centre left) launches the event jersey, with Gortin GFC Chairman Gabriel Treanor (centre right). Proudly wearing the new jersey are cycling team leaders Emma Ward and Team Goalie, Cathal McCullagh (far right). The club is set to have up to 200 of these jerseys on the streets of Gortin for the St Patrick’s Day event.
The normally quiet village of Gortin is buzzing in anticipation for the St Patrick’s Day Gold Rush Cycle, now just over a week away. The Fundraising Cycle which takes place on Saturday 17th March has brought cyclists out by the dozen onto the scenic roads around Gortin, in support of local GAA club, Gortin St Patrick’s. Consisting of a 60 mile, 30 mile and 10 mile fun-run, cyclists of every age and ability are now in the final stages of training for the big event, which is also raising funds for NI Cancer Fund for Children. A Junior Goldrush Challenge has recently been added to the day’s events, allowing younger children of Primary School age to join in the fun.
All cyclists are welcome to join the St Patrick’s Day event which begins at the Owenkillew Community Centre with registration for the 60 mile challenge at 8am. This route will take cyclists to Cookstown before facing the test of the Draperstown and Glenelly hills, and then heading back to Gortin for a St Patrick’s Day reception. The 30 mile event registration takes place at 9am, followed by the 10 mile at 11am. A pre-registration night for sponsored cyclists will be held in the Owenkillew Community Centre on Thursday 15th March from 6.30-7.30PM at which the event jersey can be collected.
Launching the Gortin Gold Rush event jersey, Gortin St. Patrick’s Club Chairman Gabriel Treanor said, “It is great to see the entire community uniting behind us to make this event a success. We set out with a target getting 50 sponsored cyclists on board – we have tripled that and numbers continue to grow – now nearing the 200 mark. Coming from such a small community, our focus has been getting everyone involved, and we are certainly achieving that. The other key success factor so far is the support that we have from sponsors. Our local businesses are digging deep to help us get this event off the ground. We know that for many, times are not great, and that makes their contribution even more valuable to us.”
The St Patrick’s Gold Rush Jersey is produced in the blue and golden yellow of Gortin, and is filled with the logos of over 28 local companies. Given pride of place on the chest of the jersey is the yellow flower of the NI Cancer Fund for Children, which is next to main sponsor VA Generators. The charity is currently lending support to two Gortin Families with young children recovering from leukemia. The type of support offered by the charity includes help with travel expenses, helping children during their stay in hospital keeping them entertained and supported, as well as offering trips and short respite breaks.
Christopher McConnell whose son James is received support from NI Cancer Fund for Children explained, “James had just joined the U-8 team at Gortin St. Patrick’s when he was diagnosed with leukemia. The charity has been a great help to all the family, both practically and helping us through the tough times. We are really pleased that the club has decided to support NI Cancer Fund – it all helps”.
Speaking on behalf of the Devine Family, Dad Gerard told us, “We are delighted that Gortin football club are raising money for the NICFC. Our daughter Ailise, who is eight was diagnosed with leukemia last year and the NICFC were absolutely fantastic to our family through a very difficult time. We have 3 boys who play for Gortin and I manage some of the youth teams, so the club is very important in our home. So on behalf of myself, my wife Jennifer, and Ailise, thank you so much. Please support Gortin GFC and the NICFC”.
Speaking on behalf of the NI Cancer Fund for Children, Ruth Hobson said, “We are absolutely delighted that the St Patrick’s Gortin Gold Rush is supporting our charity. This will help us to offer more much needed support to children and young people living with cancer. We are so grateful to all those involved in the organisation for their hard work with the event, as well as making the community aware of the work that we do. That is very important to us and our logo looks great on the Gortin Gold Rush Jersey.”
Keep up to date with all the plans for the St Patrick’s Day Gortin Gold Rush on Facebook “Gortin GAC Cycle”.