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Croke Park staff members Niamh Boyle and Kevin Sexton with Uachtarán Cumann Lúthchleas Gael, John Horan, and Barry Hickey, Treasurer of the Kilkenny County Board, at the launch of The 'Rollin2Nowlan' GAA and Croke Park Staff Charity Cycle.
Croke Park staff members Niamh Boyle and Kevin Sexton with Uachtarán Cumann Lúthchleas Gael, John Horan, and Barry Hickey, Treasurer of the Kilkenny County Board, at the launch of The 'Rollin2Nowlan' GAA and Croke Park Staff Charity Cycle.

GAA/Croke Park staff to embark on 'Rollin2Nowlan' charity cycle


A group of GAA staff from Croke Park will embark on the #Rollin2Nowlan charity cycle this Friday to raise funds for the Association’s five official charities.

This is the group’s second such charity cycle after the success of the ‘Tour de Thurles’ last September which raised €25,000 for the GAA’s official charities.

On that occasion, GAA staff cycled the 160km from Croke Park to Hayes Hotel in Thurles in aid of The Alzheimer Society of Ireland, Asthma Society of Ireland, Breakthrough Cancer Research, Cystic Fibrosis Ireland, and Make a Wish Ireland.

This time around the they’ll cycle the 140km from Croke Park to Nowlan Park in Kilkenny for the GAA’s five official charities for 2018 – Mayo/Roscommon Hospice Foundation, Cavan/Monaghan Palliative Care Fund, Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation, Concern Worldwide, and Kerry Hospice Foundation.

The charity cycle is the brainchild of Kevin Sexton, a Training and Ticketing Executive in Croke Park.

“The background to the cycle is two-fold,” says Sexton. “Firstly it's the GAA staff trying to walk the walk and talk the talk in terms of the healthy message that we promote here from Croke Park.

“And, secondly, we're trying to raise awareness and funds for the GAA's official charities.

“It started as a chat between two colleagues over lunch. We were talking about how we could tie in a healthy initiative with the very healthy staff that we have here.

“My club St. Oliver Plunketts/Eoghan Ruadh on the Navan Road in Dublin have a cycle club set up that's full of parents of players and past players and they come together every week and go off on a cycle together so it's a great community initiative and it's off the field.

“They seem to get a great community bond through it and I looked at that and thought it was something we could run with here in Croke Park. We could then use our profile here to promote it to other clubs throughout the country.”

The 'Tour de Thurles' Charity cycle raised €25,000 for five charities - The Alzheimer Society of Ireland, Asthma Society of Ireland, Breakthrough Cancer Research, Cystic Fibrosis Ireland and Make a Wish Ireland.
The 'Tour de Thurles' Charity cycle raised €25,000 for five charities - The Alzheimer Society of Ireland, Asthma Society of Ireland, Breakthrough Cancer Research, Cystic Fibrosis Ireland and Make a Wish Ireland.

The GAA staff cyclists will set out from the Michael Cusack statue at the back of the Cusack stand in Croke Park at 9.00am on Friday morning and will make pit-stops at Clane in Kildare and Ballylinan in Laois before arriving in Nowlan Park at roughly 5.00pm, so keep an eye out for them on the route.

The hope would be that now the tradition of a GAA staff charity cycle has been established, that other counties will come forward as potential future destinations for the event.

“We will assess it after this and see if there's an appetite from other counties that would like us to travel to them,” says Sexton.

“That's the aim here. Initially we picked Thurles because of the link between Croke Park and the foundation of the GAA in Thurles.

“This time around we're going to Nowlan Park because they put their hand up and asked us would we be interested in visiting their stadium. We're hoping now that other counties will contact us and ask us to cycle to raise awareness and funds.”

You can support the ‘Rollin to Nowlan’ Charity cycle at the following donation page - https://eventgen.ie/rollin-to-nowlan---gaa-croke-park-staff-charity-cycle-2018

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