06 Jul 2022

County Derry cycling event returns after three-year hiatus

The festival was last held in 2019.

County Derry cycling event returns after three-year hiatus

Ciaran Doherty (event chairman) with event sponsors Cathy Chauhan (Bloc) and Patrick McGinnis (Braidwater Group) pictured on The Birren as the Man of Sperrin event is launched.

A popular County Derry cycling festival is to return next month for the first time since 2019.

The global pandemic halted cycling action in the Sperrins over the last two years, but the Man of Sperrin event is set to return to the North West next month.

Event organisers are pleased to be back with an event they say 'showcases the splendour of The Sperrin Mountains.'

"We're delighted to be able to host Man of Sperrin again on 19 June,” said Ciaran Doherty, Chairman of the Man of Sperrin sportive.

"The last two years have been unprecedented times and tough for everyone but it was also a time when people learned to appreciate what we have around us like the benefit of exercise like cycling.

"We believe passionately that The Sperrins are hugely untapped in terms of their potential as a cycling destination and are glad to be able to host the event again.

“We are very fortunate to have secured the generous backing of two successful local firms in The Braidwater Group and Bloc who make Man of Sperrin possible.

"As well as providing some of the most spectacular and demanding cycling terrain available anywhere, we are passionate about providing a level of service to match.

“All cyclists can available of free parking, hot showers, sports massage and a post cycle BBQ at our base at Owenbeg.

"It all kicks off on Sunday 19 June and final preparations are well under way. We're looking forward to welcoming everyone back into The Sperrins in 2022.

Patrick McGinnis, a director with The Braidwater Group, said they were 'delighted' to continue their sponsorship of the event.

“The Braidwater Group has supported the Man of Sperrin event since its inception,” he said.

"The event is a very worthwhile fundraiser and as well as promoting the Sperrins its ensuring health and wellbeing is to the forefront.

“On behalf of the Braidwater Group, I’d like to wish the organising committee every success with this year’s event and we look forward to playing our part.”

Local company the Bloc Group, commended nationally for their innovation in manufacturing face shield visors for health and social care staff during the pandemic, are also sponsoring the event.

Cathy Chauhan, Production Manager with Bloc PPE, said they were 'proud' to do so.

“It is great to have an opportunity like this to celebrate not only the majestic peaks of the Sperrin mountains but also the cycling talent that will attempt this demanding challenge,” she said.

“The Bloc team are excited to be part of Man of Sperrin and we are looking forward to competing on the day."

Man of Sperrin 2022 takes place on Sunday June 19, departing Owenbeg at 9.00am. Registration and further details are available at

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