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Pride at finally getting Etape Loch Ness cycling event going for first time since 2019

By Andrew Henderson

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The Etape Loch Ness cycling event around the iconic Loch Ness will finally take place this Sunday after being postponed three times since the pandemic hit.

Etape Loch Ness start line. Liam Anderstrem
Etape Loch Ness start line. Liam Anderstrem

The 66-mile cycle sportive has become a highlight of the cycling calendar, with many participants raising funds for charity, including Etape Loch Ness’ official charity Macmillan Cancer Support.

Event director Malcolm Sutherland said organisers are pleased that the event can finally go ahead.

But he says Covid regulations will still be in place to ensure the event runs safely on Sunday.

“This green light does not mean we are complacent, especially as the Etape Loch Ness is one of the first events of its kind to take place in Scotland following the easing of restrictions. There will still be mitigations in place and the event will be different to previous years.

“There will be far fewer spectators, however, the anticipation and the enthusiasm both on our part and that of those participating has never been greater.

“I’d like to thank everyone for their patience and cooperation in getting to this point.

“We should all feel extremely proud to welcome cyclists back to Loch Ness once again.”

VisitScotland’s director of events Paul Bush said to see an event such as Etape Loch Ness is a boost for the community.

“Events are an important part of our communities and, along with the hundreds of participants, it’s wonderful to see the event green light.

“EventScotland is delighted to be supporting Etape Loch Ness through Scotland’s Events Recovery Fund and I wish everyone taking part the best of luck.”

Macmillan Cancer Support challenge events programme manager Zoe MacDonald is thrilled the charity will benefit from the event.

“We’d like to extend a massive thank you to our fundraisers who have continued to support Macmillan Cancer Support over this especially difficult time. The Etape Loch Ness is such an important fundraising opportunity for us, raising a total of £1.28 million since 2014.

“Our total for this year is over £47,000, with plenty more expected over the weekend. We hope our fundraisers and all those taking part enjoy the event – we’re sure it will be worth the wait!”

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