Enterprise, Trade and Investment Minister Arlene Foster has welcomed the announcement of the Gran Fondo Strangford and Mourne routes and encouraged local cyclists to register for the event.
Commenting on the announcement the Minister said; “The Giro d’Italia, held here last year, showcased Northern Ireland as a premium cycling and tourism destination. The Gran Fondo represents a major legacy of the success of the 2014 event. Run by Giro d’Italia organisers, RCS, the Gran Fondo will be taking place here for the next three years.
“Work has been ongoing by event organisers Shadetree Sports, supported by Tourism Northern Ireland, to confirm the announced cycling routes for the first event which will be take place in June.
“Details of the two Strangford and Mourne routes are now available, both of which showcase our beautiful scenery and countryside travelling through towns and villages such as Rathfriland, Hilltown, Castlewellan and Comber. The Strangford route will also be starting from Titanic, Belfast before taking in views of the iconic Harland and Wolff cranes.
“I would encourage all cycling enthusiasts to register for the Gran Fondo event. With global interest expected and international participants travelling to Northern Ireland, there will be a positive economic impact, with riders and their families filling local hotels and restaurants. With fully closed roads across the routes, the Gran Fondo will go some way to giving participants that true Giro experience.”