Off the Bloom adventure race takes place in Kinnitty this weekend

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john.ocallaghan

The third edition of the Off the Bloom Adventure Race is set to take place in Kinnitty village on August 17.

The Adventure Race is split into two categories including a 70km elite race and a 37km sports race. This multi sport event will see competitors trail running through the glorious Slieve Bloom mountains, kayaking at the pristine Pallas Lake close to the Blueball and taking on the demanding cycling section that will include Knock Hill close to Ballyboy and Lackaroe in the Slieve Bloom mountains. This year’s elite race is also part of the Continental National Adventure Race Expert Series, which indicates that the race is now classed as one of the best Elite races in the country.

Speaking of the Off the Bloom co-race founder Jonathan O’Meara said that the Off the Bloom Adventure Race has grown from strength to strength over the last couple of years, and is a firm favourite for many adventure racers not only in the midlands but also across Ireland. “As you can appreciate there’s a huge amount of pre race organising. The logistics of organising an adventure race is massive so before we could even set about planning routes we had to have the support of a number of government bodies including Coilte and the Offaly County Council. The safety of our competitors is always our number one priority so we try to set up the race in manner that will ensure everyone will get around the course safely.

“I’m pleased to announce that this year’s race is sold out now and we are really looking forward to welcoming over 200 competitors to Kinnitty for the weekend. The race brings a carnival atmosphere to the village for the weekend and it also proves to be a huge boost to the local economy with local accommodation providers, bars and shops seeing an increase in footfall over the two days.”

A race of this magnitude does not happen without the assistance of their loyal sponsors explained Jonathan. “Once again we are delighted to have our main sponsor Offaly Local Development Company, Mid Ireland Adventure and the Slieve Bloom Mountain Bike Centre onboard. I would like to praise the voluntary groups including Offaly Civil Defence and Kinnitty GAA for their help and assistance on staging the race. I’d also like to thank all our crew who give up their free time to help out on the day. It’s important to acknowledge the role of the OTB race director Derek Middleton who once again has improved the overall quality of the race. Derek is constantly looking to improve both routes and I think this year’s race will be even better than 2018. Finally I would encourage the community of Kinnitty and the surrounding parishes to turn out on Saturday August 17 to cheer on the competitors. The race itself kicks off at the square in Kinnitty Village with Wave one of the Elite beginning at 11am,” added Jonathan. The Off the Bloom Adventure Race takes place in Kinnitty and the surrounding townlands of Ballyboy, Mountbolus, Pallas Lake Blueball and Cadamstonstown on Saturday August 17.

Diversions and road marshalls will be in effect from the hours of 11am to 5pm on Saturday evening. Motorists and road users are asked to co-operate with all race marshalls along the race route.

The Off the Bloom Adventure Race promoters would like to thank the residents at Pallas Lake and Kinnitty in particular for their co-operation on Saturday August 17.

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