Keen cyclists across Midlothian are being encouraged to get on their bikes and pedal to success to raise funds for Edinburgh’s Sick Kids Friends Foundation (SKFF).
And it doesn’t matter whether you fancy yourself as the next Sir Chris Hoy or you just enjoy a leisurely cycle through the countryside – this year’s Megacycle wants everyone to get involved.
Sponsored by SEStran for the third consecutive year, the Megacycle is a non-competitive, all-abilities event that aims to promote cycling for health, fun and as a form of sustainable transportation that can help tackle traffic congestion and the reduce the region’s carbon footprint.
More than 400 participants rode the scenic 20-mile route from Penicuik to Musselburgh Racecourse last year, and organisers expect that number to be even higher this year.
Quintin Young, from the Midlothian Tourist Forum, who is organising the event swears it is “almost all downhill” and easily achievable with minimum effort.
He added: “This is the third year our Megacycle will be sponsored by SEStran and we are extremely grateful for the support we have received from them since 2010.
“I’m confident that this year will see an increase on last year’s 400-plus participants and hopefully we will top last year’s total of £3,170 raised for the Sick Kids Friends Foundation.
“Good weather always helps the turnout of course and we’ve been very lucky so far, so let’s hope it remains that way this year.
“I absolutely promise this is not a difficult route to cycle – it’s for all abilities so it’s extremely manageable. We will also provide transport for bikes and riders both before and after the event.”
Will Guest, corporate and events fundraiser at the Sick Kids Friends Foundation said: “Every year the SEStran Megacycle is a great success and a fantastic fun day out for all the family.
“It’s for a brilliant cause and helps you get fit at the same time. We can’t thank the team Midlothian Tourism Forum and the participants enough for their generosity in organising and taking part in this event each year.”
This year’s event will take place on Sunday, 6 May. Cyclists will cover mostly traffic-free roads with the route tracing the former railtrack from Penicuik to Dalkeith, before heading alongside the River Esk to its mouth at the Forth. At Dalkeith Palace grounds spectators and participants can stop for a breather, enjoy a picnic and replenish their energy before attempting the final hurdle.
Transport for bikes and riders is available from Musselburgh Racecourse car park both before and after the event.
Anyone eager to get involved can register through the website www.SEStran-megacycle.co.uk. You are encouraged to register as early as possible to avoid disappointment.