Friday 29 September 2023
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Cork Rebel Tour Cycle Celebrates 10 Years on the Road

Cork Rebel Tour Cycle Celebrates 10 Years on the Road

Cork Rebel Tour returns to the Beara Peninsula on September 8th –

Cork Sports Partnership has announced Cork County Council and Bantry Bay Port Company as joint sponsors of the Cork Rebel Tour 2018. Celebrating its 10th year, the Cork Rebel Tour returns to West Cork and the Beara Peninsula for the 6th time on Saturday 8th September.

Kristine Meenaghan, Coordinator of the Cork Sports Partnership made the announcement in Cork County Hall. “Cork Sports Partnership is delighted to have Cork County Council and Bantry Bay Port Company on board as co-sponsors of this year’s eventCork County Council and Bantry Bay Port Company have been long-time supporters of the work of Cork Sports Partnership and in particular of the Cork Rebel Tour”. She added “Events like the Cork Rebel Tour would not be possible without the support of sponsors like Cork County Council and Bantry Bay Port Company and the local communities in Beara and we are grateful for their continued support”.

The event encourages people to get physically active through cycling the uniquely breath-taking scenery of the Beara Peninsula. Starting in Glengarriff, participants will have 2 routes to choose from in the 160km Rebel Challenge and 85km Rebel Rider. A number of family fun 10km cycles will also take place throughout Cork in conjunction with the event. This will include a family cycle in Glengarriff organised by a number of local community groups and organisations.

Speaking at the launch, Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Declan Hurley said: “Cork County Council is delighted, again this year, to be associated and sponsor the Cork Rebel Tour.   The Tour encourages people of all fitness levels to get physically active by getting on their bikes and taking in the breath-taking scenery of the Beara Peninsula’s hills, valleys, and picturesque local villages”.  Tim Lucey, Chief Executive of Cork County Council, said: Tourism has a vital role in supporting the local economy in Cork and leisure activities such as cycling play an important part in this. It is great to see the Cork Rebel Tour returning to the Beara Peninsula for the 6th year. The spectacular nature of the routes and scenery provide the perfect backdrop for this event to showcase West Cork”.

Since 2009, Cork Sports Partnership has been supporting recreational cycling in Cork. Last year over 2,500 cyclists took part in the event and similar participation is expected this year.

Paul O’ Regan, Harbour Master of Port of Cork & Bantry Bay Port said of the announcement, “The Cork Rebel Tour provides a great opportunity for families, friends and colleagues to experience some of what West Cork has to offer and Bantry Bay Port Company is excited to sponsor and support the event again this year. He added “We hope to have a team of 100 cyclists participating in this year’s event and look forward to meeting everyone taking part on 8th September.”

With last year’s event selling out in record time, participants are encouraged to sign up early with family, friends and work colleagues to avoid missing out. Registration for the event opens on Tuesday 8th May on

Mr. Conor Mowlds, Head of the National Maritime College of Ireland, Captain Paul O Regan, Harbour Master of Port of Cork & Bantry Bay Port, Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Declan Hurley, Mr. Tim Lucey, CEO Cork County Council, Ms. Kristine Meenaghan, Coordinator, Cork Sports Partnership, Cllr. Derry Canty, Board of Directors, Cork Sports Partnership and Cllr. Joe Carroll, Chairperson of West Cork Municipal District at the launch of the Rebel Tour.

About the Cork Rebel Tour:

The Cork Rebel Tour is a mass participation leisure sportive organised by Cork Sports Partnership. Over 2,500 participants take part in the event annually with 160k, 85k and 10k family fun routes to choose from.

The event was formerly a part of the An Post Cycle Series and subsequent Sport Ireland Cycle Series. This is the first year as a standalone event.

160km Rebel Challenge:

The “160km Rebel Challenge” is regarded as one of the “Most Challenging Sportives” on the Irish cycling calendar and will challenge the most hardened of Rebel Warriors! The route starts out from Glengarriff with a climb over the Caha Pass, through a series of beautiful hand hewn rock tunnels across the border into the Kingdom of Kerry.

Following an easy descent to Kenmare, riders turn left onto the R571 in the direction of the Beara Peninsula along the shoreline of the Kenmare Bay. Riders continue into Lauragh before climbing the Healy Pass for the first time, crossing back over into the Rebel County of Cork. The descent from the Healy Pass requires care and attention with many sharp and hairpin corners to negotiate. A welcome food/refreshment stop awaits riders at the bottom of the first Healy pass descent.

The route continues on the R572 through the fishing port of Castletownbere and on to the village of Allihies, before climbing the significant rocky mountain pass between Allihies and Urhan known locally as “Reentrisk” or translated meaning “The Cods Head”.

The second foodstop on this challenging route is laid out in Eyeries, where riders prepare for the final leg of their journey back to HQ in Glengarriff. Continuing along the R571 through the village of Ardgroom and rolling into Lauragh, riders are guided to take a right turn onto the R574 to climb the Healy Pass for the second time, armed with the full knowledge of what lays ahead. The Healy Pass descent again needs care and attention before turning left at the bottom and back onto the R572 rolling back into Glengarriff. 

160km Start Time:

          160km Start Time: 09:00 sharp

          Eccles Hotel, Glengarriff

85km Rebel Rider:

The “85km Rebel Rider” provides cyclists with a number of challenging climbs and is best suited to the experienced but lapsed cyclist or the eager to test and challenge themselves cyclist. The route departs Glengarriff along the N71, climbing the Caha Pass through a series of beautiful hand hewn rock tunnels across the border into the Kingdom of Kerry.

Following an easy descent down to Kenmare, riders take a left turn onto the R571 in the direction of the Beara Peninsula along the shoreline of the Kenmare Bay, before turning right at Tousist for a welcome food/refreshments stop.

Enclosed by mountains and sea, Tuosist has some of the most spectacular scenery to be found anywhere in Ireland, with views out to the Atlantic Ocean and across Kenmare Bay to the Ring of Kerry and the majestic range of the Magillicuddy Reeks.

Departing Tousist and following the coast road through Kilmakilloge and onto Lauragh where riders are guided onto the R574 to begin their climb of the famous Healy Pass. Once out of the valley, riders are treated to some of the most spectacular views of the Beara Peninsula, which distracts from ill-feelings towards the previous climb.

On passing back over the border at the summit of the Healy Pass, riders descend back into the Rebel County of Cork and are treated to a 4 km descent of sharp hairpin bends with wonderful little stone walls and bridges hidden beneath. At the base of the Healy Pass, riders turn left onto the R572 back towards Glengarriff to recover and celebrate with your fellow cyclists.  

85km Start Time:

          85km Start Time: 10:00

          Eccles Hotel, Glengarriff