Organisers of the Marie Curie Cancer
Care Etape Caledonia, IMG Challenger World, has announced today
that all 5,100 places on the 2012 event have sold out in record
time. The event starts and finishes in Pitlochry, passing through Rannoch and near Aberfeldy.
Overwhelming demand for the 2012 Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape
Caledonia, taking place in Highland
Perthshire on May 13th, saw the event sell out in a matter of
weeks since entries opened mid September. This underlines the
growing popularity of what was the UK's first closed road cycling
sportive and is now the largest of its kind outside mainland
The news comes as a welcome boost to the Highland Perthshire
economy with the event expected to bring in over £1million of
additional spend in the area as cyclists and their families flock
to Highland Perthshire for this annual event which has become a
firm favourite in the cyclist's calendar.
To cope with increasing demand for such events, the organisers
have recently announced the opening of their third closed road
sportive and the first closed road event in England, the Marie
Curie Cancer Care Etape Pennines, which takes place in Durham on
October 7th 2012. Entries for this event are now open and are
sure to sell quickly as this is the only opportunity for cyclists
to ride on completely closed roads through some of the most
stunning countryside in the north of England.
Julia Warne, Head of Marketing, PR & Communications for IMG
Challenger World sees the growth in demand as a reward for hard
work in delivering quality events: "2011 has been a great year
for us with the Etape Caledonia and Hibernia growing in popularity
and cementing their reputation on the national and international
sportive calendars. Now that the Marie Curie Cancer Care Etape
Caledonia has sold out in record time, it's great to be able to
offer cyclists another closed road event in the new Marie Curie
Cancer Care Etape Pennines on 7th October 2012."
"We are excited about returning to Scotland in 2012, with a
sell out event and continuing to build on our success and our
positive impact on the local economy. We understand that a number
of hotels and B&Bs are already booked up well in advance and
that the Highland Perthshire business community is preparing for a
very busy weekend in May."
Marie Curie Cancer Care is the official Charity Partner of the
Etape Series 2012. All funds raised by cyclists taking part will
enable Marie Curie Nurses to provide more free care and support to
terminally ill people and their families.
For more information on Marie
Curie Cancer Care Etape Caledonia
Highland Perthshire had its first full time dedicated cycle shop
in 'Escape Route' in
Pitlochry in 1997. There have been a number of
businesses that rented out cycles as in most areas of Scotland.
The big change to cycling in Highland Perthshire was the
introduction of Etape Caledonia, Britain's only closed road event
for cyclists. The first Etape Caledonia event was held on Sunday
24th June 2007 amidst quite some considerable opposition. The
opposition was against road closures and some of the opponents had
grievances with P&K Council over various issues. From a
personal perspective I felt the communications about the event had
been poor and this is what got many people's backs up.
The 81 mile Etape Caledonia route starts in
Pitlochry, but runs through the communities of Tummel,
Rannoch, Fortingall, Dull and Weem near
Aberfeldy and back to Pitlochry.
The event has grown year on year, with the 2011 Etape
Caledonia selling out six months early with 5,250 entrants up 750
on the 2010 level. There is no doubt the event attracts many people
to Highland Perthshire that would not have otherwise have come
here. The stunning scenery along the route leaves many first timers
to the area really impressed.
One of the outcomes from the event is that a group of
businesses and individuals worked to maximise the event for
Highland Perthshire. Initially the objective was to ensure as many
Highland Perthshire businesses were involved from marshalling, to
therapists, catering and of course accommodation. Also to make sure
businesses along the closed road route were involved where ever
This has led to the formation of the Highland Perthshire
Cycling Group who now employ someone one day a week all year round
to drive cycling in Highland Perthshire, in the schools, to clubs
and events and importantly now coordi