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Calling Cyclists - Countdown to Etape Caledonia

17th June 2007

Next weekend sees one of Britain's most exciting cycling events take place around the Perthshire highlands and lochs. The Etape Caledonia on 24 June, is Britain's only mass participation sportive ride to take place on entirely closed roads.

Cyclists from around Scotland and the rest of Britain will be able to enjoy the breathtaking scenery in controlled conditions only usually enjoyed by professional cyclists.

There are two routes on offer, both starting and finishing in Piltochry, and it's not too late to enter! The longer 81 mile route takes in a climb of Schiehallion, whilst the shorter 28 mile route cycles the beautiful Loch Tummel.

Etape Caledonia director Kevin Stewart said; "It is a historic first to get the roads closed for a mass participation cycling event. Perth and Kinross Council and the police have been fully involved in the detailed planning and organisation that has gone into putting this event on."

"We are offering something special to experienced and recreational cyclists. Cycling on closed roads will be unique in Britain, and seeding the riders based on previous performances will ensure that the fastest ones can get off to a quick start and have the opportunity to record a good time. We also want them to come to the area and enjoy the incredible tourist benefits."

Former World Champion cyclist, Tony Doyle, is set to ride the Etape Caledonia with a group of friends. He said: "I'm making the trip from London to take advantage of some of the best cycling conditions on offer anywhere in the world. It's common for European events to take place on closed roads, but this is a first in Britain and an opportunity not to be missed."

The event will start at 8am and roads will be reopened as soon as the last riders have completed certain sections. It is expected that all roads will be reopened by 1pm.

Entry is available online by visiting
http://www.etapecaledonia.co.uk.

Entries to Etape Caledonia are 49 for the 81 mile route and 25 for the 28 mile route, both offering a full road closure for participants able to maintain a 12mph average speed.

Route information:

81 Miles Challenge Course
Starting Pitlochry following B8079
Left onto B8019 alongside Loch Tummel
Continue onto B846 to follow around Loch Rannoch, skirting the village of Rannoch again before climbing over Schiehallion to rejoin B846 heading south, past Glen Goulandie Deer Park attraction At Coshieville turn right towards Fortingall, passing the Ancient Yew landmark, looping back on the south side of the river to return to the B846 at Comrie Bridge.
Continue passing Castle Menzies, Weem & Black Watch Memorial
landmark
Joining the Strathlay road on the north bank of the River Tay to reach the A827 towards Logierait.
At Logierait turn left onto the Dunfallandy Road continue past Dunfallandy
Stone attraction leading back into Pitlochry at Fonab and onto the main street.

28 Mile Intermediate Route
Starting Pitlochry following B8079
Left onto B8019 alongside Loch Tummel
Left onto B846 heading south
Left again on to the Foss Road on the south side of Loch
Tummel with Tay
Forest Park to right
Follow into Pitlochry past the Festival Theatre and left onto the main street.

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