Donegal Atlantic Way Ultra 555 2021

It’s that time of the year again when people put themselves to one of the toughest cycling challenges in our area – the 555km Donegal Ultra. This year we have plenty of members taking part:

Solo Male: Event veteran John McFadden riding under #21 and away at 6:30am

2 Person Team: C&M Diabetes (Columba Gallen and his friend Martin Gallogley from Ederney) riding under #48 and away at 7:30am. Again these two guys are no stranger to this event.

4 Person Team: Turtle Juice (Dean Herron, Enda McIntyre, Paul Kelly, Seamy McDermott) riding under #66 and away at 8:17am.

Tracking map is available by clicking the image below

Good luck to everyone both those riding and those working as support crews and drivers.

Stay safe everyone and enjoy the challenge 💪🚲


Official Restart of Club Spins

With the relaxation of Covid restrictions we are officially restarting Club spins this week.

As last year we will be having two mid week spins and a Sunday spin.

Tuesday and Thursday @ 7pm from Harrold’s Yard, Glenside for all groups. These evening spins are usually 50-60km and there will be a group for all abilities. There are limited toilet and changing facilities for anyone coming from work.

Sunday @ 8am. The Advanced group will be leaving from Lidl car park. The Sunday run will usually be longer and range from 80-100km+ at a faster pace (27-30km/hr). A higher level of fitness and experience is needed for this spin but all members are welcome if they want to improve and challenge themselves.

Sunday @ 9am. The Turtles will be leaving from Harrold’s Yard. These runs usually have a social nature and are a good chance to meet other members of the Club and develop your skills for riding in a group. Distances range from 40-100km depending on the challenge with options for shorter or longer runs depending on your fitness and experience.

Please remember that everyone attending Club spins must have a valid Cycling Ireland license. You can renew this via the Cycling Ireland website or by contacting the Club Membership Secretary (Mary Harrold). New members are also welcome and Mary can help you to get registered.

Finally please also remember to follow all official Covid19 advice and restrictions. We all want to keep getting back to normal so stay vigilant and stay safe.

See you all on Thursday 🤞👍🚴🏿‍♀️🚴

Bike Week 2020

Bike Week normally takes place in June but has been recheduled to September this year due to COVID-19. Over the extended week of 19th-27th Finn Wheelers are delighted to once again be hosting 3 events for the local community.

Wednesday 23rd September @ 7pm

An Introduction to Bicycle Maintenance

This will cover all the basic topics required to get your bike ready on a daily basis and how to deal with minor mechanical failures and puncture repairs. At the end of this session you should have a good idea how to keep your bike roadworthy and know when to take it for a professional service

Friday 25th September @ 8:30pm

An Introduction to Sports Nutrition

Not sure what and when you should be eating and drinking before, during and after exercise? This session is designed to advise and support cyclists of all levels and will be presented by Shaun McGlynn of Profitness.

Sunday 27th September @8am

Group Road Cycle

Aimed at Intermediate and higher this event is designed to teach you the skills of riding within a group while on the road. Get tips and advice from experienced Finn Wheelers members how to position yourself within a group, rotate to maximise energy and ride in close configuration as well as learn the etiquette of group riding. Options for distances of 25K, 50K and higher if needed. This event will require a road bike in good working order, flashing lights front and rear and a cycling helmet.

All events are open to the entire community and you don’t have to be a member of Finn Wheelers or any other cycling club to come along. In fact Bike Week is about encouraging non-cyclists to get involved in the sport.

The venue for all three events is Glenside Business Park F93 NYN8 [GOOGLE MAPS LINK]

If you do intend to come to any or all of the events please take some time to review the Club’s COVID-19 advice [LINK] and make sure to go through the “Self Assessment Screening Questionnaire”. [DOWNLOAD LINK]

What a Weekend!

2020 has been the weirdest of years for everyone but despite all the challenges we’ve managed to finish the Summer with a bang 💣

First up was our endurance specialist and King of the Wild Atlantic Way, John McFadden, taking on the Ultra 555 solo yet again. Despite the additional challenges involved with an August date compared to to the usual June slot, John smashed his time from last year finishing in 24h 44min, beating last year by 53min. John was supported by a number of members that were essential to his success. He was also especially thankful to everyone that made the effort to get out and cheer him on the route, especially early on Saturday morning.

Sunday was time for the Club end of season event and the very first edition of Lap The Finn. This event and route was the brainchild of Kevin Harrold and the Turtle Group 🐢 Inspired by Lap The Lough it was a circuit of the River Finn from the head at Lough Finn to its merge with the Mourne, creating the Foyle at Lifford. There was a great turnout from across the Club. The main route was 105km but there was something for all abilities with the Advanced Group completing 125km and others riding a variety of routes across 50 and 75km. Massive well done to everyone that took part and especial thanks to Mary and Kevin Harrold for providing the facilities at Glenside Business Park, Nuala, Fiona and Jennifer for organising the refreshments before and after and Harkins Bar in Brockagh for tea and biscuits. A very special word of thanks to Fiona Patton for baking a massive amount of cakes, buns and apple tarts that went down a storm at the end of the spin.

Our official photographer for the day was Erin Harrold taking all of the photos below 📸

The Summer may be over but there’s still a lot of cycling to be done and groups will be out throughout the rest of the year. Keep an eye on Facebook and WhatsApp for announcements of modified days and times for Autumn and Winter.

Keep pedalling and stay safe 🚴‍♂️🚴‍♀️

Lap The Finn

The Turtle Group had planned to finish the Summer with the 2020 edition of Lap The Lough on Sunday 30th August. Unfortunately, like so many other events, it has been cancelled due to Covid19.

Not to be beaten they have come up with a new challenge – Lap The Finn. The River Finn rises from Lough Finn and flows to Lifford where it meets the Mourne to form the River Foyle.

The plan is to meet at Glenside Business Park at 9am on Sunday and cycle via the back road to Strabane, crossing the end of the Finn to Lifford and back to Stranorlar via the N15. Turning at Chapel Street the route heads to Fintown via Welchtown and Cloghan before crossing the head of the Finn to Lough Muck and on to the R253. Finally back to Ballybofey via Comeen and Reelin completing a full lap of the Finn at just over 100km.

This will be a full Club event with everyone welcome. To suit all abilities there will be options to shorten the route to 25km by turning at Castlefinn or 50km by stopping before heading to Cloghan. There will also be break options at Dalys in Lifford and Cloghan. For anyone looking for an extra challenge the route can be extended by going on to Glenties before turning for Ballybofey.

On return to Glenside there will be light refreshments provided by the Club and time for a chat.

We will publish a finalised Strava route for download later in the week. Hoping to see lots of members out to finish the Summer in style.

Donegal Bay Summer League

The final round of the League was held in Barnes Gap yesterday evening with another good turnout for the Club. Aaron Quinn, John McFadden, Eunan Quinn, Pat Dunnion, Terry Burns and Keith O’Donnell all competed strongly with Aaron taking 9th place.

Aaron’s strong performance cemented his success throughout the League and saw him take 1st Place overall in the Junior category. Congratulations Aaron from all at the Club.

© Donegal Bay CC

Finn Wheelers Beginner Group

Supported by experienced Club members to provide support and advice, this group is aimed at helping novice cyclists (Adults only 18+) and those returning to cycling after a long break.

You should have a reasonable level of fitness but don’t feel you have to ride the Tour de France just yet! Ideally you can cycle approximately 10km at a slower pace.

All you need is a bike in good working order and a cycling helmet. Lights front and rear and some form of HiViz vest/jacket aren’t essential but will make you more visible to traffic while you build your confidence.

If you have a spare tube and portable pump bring them with you in case of a puncture.

If you are interested simply turn up 10-15min before the start time or contact Club Secretary Mary Harrold or PRO Niall Harran via WhatsApp, email or via our Facebook page.

To cycle regularly with the Club at any level you will require Cycling Ireland and Club membership. This also provides you with cycling insurance. For brand new members you can take part in two sessions before you have to take out membership.

Before attending any Club activities please familiarise yourself with our Covid19 Advice.

Club Activities Report Week Beginning 13th July

There has been quite a lot of activity the last couple of weeks since we officially returned to Club organised activities. Numbers have been strong in general depending on weather as usual.

We have one photo from this week as Intermediate and Advanced groups were both out Thursday evening.

Pictured are Enda, Kevin, Gabrial, Stephen, Anthony, John, Paul, Margo, Mary, Gerard, John and Raymond.

Numbers were down a bit due to the wet forecast but also because some members were competing in the weekly TT series being run by our neighbours in Donegal Bay CC.

Eunan, Aaron, Terry and Adrian all competed in this week’s 25mile TT with good shows all round but particularly for Aaron.

Aaron has been consistently strong through the series so far setting a great 10mile time and currently sitting 5th in the overall rankings.

Round 2: 10mile TT

Club activities continue at the usual times as posted last week.

Please continue to take and share photos on Instagram and Facebook tagged #finnwheelerscc or send them to Niall via WhatsApp or our Facebook page.

Finn Wheelers Covid19 Advice

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Club Activities & Covid19


Attendance at Club events continue to draw good numbers across all abilities and days. We plan to keep running events at the times and locations below:

Tuesday & Thursday

Glenside Business Park 7pm. All abilities welcome with groups dividing into Intermediate and Advanced Levels. Beginners are also welcome but will have to self organise on these two evenings.


Lidl 8am. Advanced group. Usually a 2-3hr spin at a 28-30km/hr average.


Lidl 8am. Advanced group. Similar length and speed to Saturday.

Lidl 8:30am. Mountain Bike group. Usually 2-3hr spin on a mix of roads and trails. Open to all abilities with #nooneleftbehind

Glenside Business Park 9am. Turtles Intermediate groups. Beginners welcome but will have to self organise.


There has been significant interest in developing a beginners group within the Club for those who are brand new to cycling or have been away from it for a long time. This group would be aimed at cyclists who would currently be cycling <20km and at a slow pace.

We plan to organise these spins for a Monday and Wednesday evening so that Club members will be able to accompany, support and advise beginners while still being able to attend the usual Tuesday and Thursday groups. Beginners will also be welcome on Tuesdays and Thursdays but will need to self organise on these evenings.

Club members will be asked to commit to at least one of these beginner sessions during the next couple of months but if you are interested in committing a little more time please contact Mary Harrold or Niall Harran via WhatsApp or our Facebook page.

If you are interested in joining the Beginner Group then please also contact Mary or Niall or email Once we have a few people signed up we will get started.


A valid Cycling Ireland and Club membership is required for all members for all Club activities. You can renew your membership via the Cycling Ireland website or contact Club Secretary Mary Harrold via WhatsApp or our Facebook page for assistance.

Any new members are entitled to 2 spins with the Club before they need to sign up. All previous members need to renew immediately once their licence expires.

Please don’t put other members at risk by cycling uninsured and avoid the embarrassment of being asked not to take part in a Club event. We would ask that all members make sure their membership is up to date as Club officers really don’t want to be in the position of having to enforce this requirement.


We have a general WhatsApp group for chat and communication between members. If you want to be added to this group then please contact Mary Harrold or Niall Harran via WhatsApp or our Facebook page.

We have also launched a new Buy and Sell Group where members can advertise bikes, equipment and gear for sale. A link to join this group has been posted to the general WhatsApp group. Simply click on the link to join.


Unfortunately Covid19 hasn’t gone away yet and cases are once again on the rise. It is the responsibility of all of us to ensure that we protect each other. Last month we published specific advice for attending Club activities and would ask that all members familiarise themselves with this advice on a regular basis. [LINK]

At the beginning of all Club activities we ask that all attendees take part in a group photo so that we can have a record of members in the event that one of us tests positive and to facilitate contact tracing.

Cycling Ireland have also issued a “Self Assessment Screening Questionnaire” that all members should read through at home prior to attending any Club or group activity. [DOWNLOAD LINK]

The government have also launched a Covid Tracker app that will help you to check your symptoms and alert you if you come in contact with someone who tests positive and others if you test positive. This app is designed to slow down the spread of the virus and protect us all. You can get more information and download links from the government website:

Fundamentally if you have any symptoms, suspect that you may have been in contact with someone who has the virus or have been out of the country then you should avoid attending any Club activities for a minimum of 14 days. If you do test positive then please inform any Club officer as soon as possible so that we can inform other members of the need to get tested.

Stay Safe. Protect Each Other.

HSE Coronavirus Advice

Header image by Roman Pohorecki from Pexels

We’re Back!

With the recent relaxations to the lockdown restrictions we’re returning to organised Club spins at long last. The following will be our weekly activities each week for the foreseeable future:

Tuesday & Thursday

Road bikes 7pm from Glenside Business Park (Google Maps Link). There are limited toilet and changing facilities available here before and after each spin.

Please try and arrive 10-15min early so that bikes are ready to roll at 7pm sharp and to allow time to mix with other members, form groups and decide routes.

There will be an opportunity to form Advanced, Intermediate and Beginner groups each evening depending on ability and requirements.


Advanced group leaving Lidl at 8am. This is a fast paced and competitive group but open to all members. You should be comfortable cycling longer distances (60-100km) at a fast pace (27-30km/h). If intermediate level members wish to challenge themselves it is also possible to go with this group until you hit your limit and get dropped. Consistent training with this group will see definite improvements in speed, distance and fitness.

On occasion this group may go earlier for longer spins of 100km+. Keep an eye on Facebook and WhatsApp for announcements.


Advanced group leaving Lidl at 8am, same setup as Saturday.

Intermediate and Beginner groups leaving Glenside Business Park at 9am. As with evening spins please arrive early to form groups. Spins will have a social focus and usually involve a coffee stop so bring some money.

MTB group leaving Lidl at 8:30am. This will be a 2-3 hour spin with a variety of terrain and routes each week. With #nooneleftbehind it’s a chance to challenge both skills and fitness without being dropped.

Lights, front and back are advised for all road bikes as well as bright clothing. BE SAFE. BE SEEN

Be mindful of other members and use mudguards for wet and muddy roads.

Unfortunately Covid19 is still with us. It is vital that all members do all they can to protect themselves and each other during group activities. Please take time to read the advice below and make sure you are doing your part.

Finn Wheelers Covid19 Advice

Club Membership

A valid Cycling Ireland and Club membership is required for all Club activities. You can renew your membership via the Cycling Ireland website or contact Club Secretary Mary Harrold via WhatsApp or our Facebook page for assistance.

Any new members are entitled to 2 spins with the Club before they need to sign up. All previous members need to renew once their licence expires.

Please don’t put other members at risk by cycling uninsured and avoid the embarrassment of being asked not to take part in a Club event.

Social Media



Please tag photos on Facebook and Instagram #finnwheelerscc for all members to follow and see. Feel free to post photos of any cycling activities solo or in groups.

WhatsApp: to join the Club group please contact Club Secretary Mary Harrold via WhatsApp or by sending a message through our Facebook page.

Photos from the last week:

Thursday evening, Glenside.
Saturday morning, Lough Melvin, Garrison.

Memories from the Ultra 555, 2019