The Ring Of Kerry Charity Cycle

The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle is always on the first Saturday in July. The official start is at 7.30am; however you will find people starting as early as 6.00am and as late as 8.30 am.

When is the cycle?
The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle is always on the first Saturday in July. In 2017 this is the 1st of July.

What time is the official start?
The official start is at 7.30am; however you will find people starting as early as 6.00am and as late as 8.30 am. However we would recommend that you look at our timetable for the day and abide by the timings on this schedule.

What happens if I start before 6.00am or after 8.30am?
You will not have the benefit of backup services or traffic restrictions.

Is there a time limit for the cycle?
All our event support systems stand down at 20.00 (8 pm) so if you are later than this you will not have the benefit of backup services or traffic restrictions. Please see our Event timetable for closure times of the various food stations.

If I cannot finish the cycle within the given time what happens?
You will be expected to avail of the service of our sweeps who will transport you and your bike back to Killarney. (The planners have allowed you 14 hours to complete the Cycle)

Where can I park?
Important information on parking will be posted before the cycle.

What is the fastest time that the event has been done in?
The event is not a race. It should be looked on as a day out to be enjoyed in the presence of 11,000+ friends.

Can I start somewhere else other than Killarney?
It is strongly advised that you start in Killarney. If you decide to start somewhere else you may not have backup services available to you at certain times. Our services are planned to cater for cyclists starting form and finishing in Killarney.

I registered online, what do I do next?
You will received an email outlining what you need to do next. If you do not receive this, please email

What is the purpose of the bike tag and wristband?
The wristband will allow you to gain access to the food stations. The bike tags will allow your passage through the checkpoints on the closed road sections.

Where should I put my bike tag?
You need to display your bike tag clearly on your handlebars as shown below. This is the only acceptable position and will ensure your speedy passage through the checkpoints.




Judging by its statement, the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle organising committee has clearly felt under extreme pressure over changes to fees and donations, as well as its entry system.


Having late last year changed its fee/donation structure and its entry system, the extremely popular Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle attracted a lot of criticism online from cyclists across the country.

And the organisation has now moved to address those concerns, issuing a lengthy statement which stickybottle has published in full below.

The charity event has been forced to explain why it moved to a lottery entry system instead of the traditional first come, first served approach.

·         Ring of Kerry Sportive launches lottery entry; no-refund fee to put name forward

It has also felt the need to give reasons why €10 is payable when entering the lottery system to secure a place at the event and why that fee is no refundable to those would-be entrants who are not successful in securing places.

The organising committee said the €10 charges are designed to avoid people entering the lottery multiple times.

And it says it has moved to a lottery because its online entry system was so overload last year when it opened that it crashed and locked a lot of people out while others experienced no problems.

It has strongly denied it has ‘become a business’; devoting a section of its statement to addressing that criticism which it says has been levelled at it.

Finally, on the issue of introducing a new minimum €170 sum for charity payable by all riders who enter; it said 10 per cent of those who rode last year were yet to return their sponsorship money.

This level of non compliance necessitated a tighter approach by the organising committee, it suggests.

The statement below is presented under a number of headings which set out the criticisms the organising committee feels have been levelled against it.

And the committee seeks to explain its logic under those headings for each change it has introduced for this year’s event.


Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle statement in full

We at the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle would like to address some of the feedback that we have received in relation to the registration process for this year’s cycle.

To address your feedback:

Lottery System:

Many of the first people who tried to register for 2015’s cycle were unable to get a place. This was due to unprecedented demand for places – over 9,000 people applied for 5,000 places on the morning that registration opened which caused the registration system to crash.

To avoid this issue happening again and to ensure the fairest system possible for registration, we decided upon a lottery that would be run over 6 weeks, giving people ample time to register.

Registration for the lottery is still open (by following this link) and will remain so until open until 23.00 on Sunday, January 31st, 2016.


‘Price’; ‘Cost’; ‘Admission Charge’; ‘Fee’:

We have received a lot of feedback regarding the ‘price’, or ‘cost’, ‘admission charge’ or ‘fee’ for our charity event.

The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle imposes none of these – 90% all monies given by you to the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle are donations to the charities.

Like any charity event, there are running costs, and the remaining 10% goes to cover these running costs.

These include insurance, medical expenses, water, health and safety equipment and more. Many charity sportives can have costs of over 90% with less than 10% of all money received going to charity.

In 2014 additional sponsors were brought on board to contribute towards these running costs with the ultimate goal to have 100% of all money raised by cyclists to go to charities. We are aiming to be the very first charity cycle in Ireland to achieve this zero staging cost by 2017.


€10 Non-Refundable Minimum Donation:

This non-refundable donation was put in place to prevent people trying to gain unfair advantage by entering the lottery multiple times. Anyone who secures a place on the Cycle will have this €10 minimum donation taken off their registration fee. The €10 of those who are unsuccessful will be donated to the charities.

Questions on the lottery registration process in relation to the number of previous Ring of Kerry Charity Cycles taken part in and how much money you plan to raise:

These questions are purely for research purposes. Our aim is to collect as much data as possible about the cyclists who take part in the event to help us improve our fundraising efforts and ensure the future of this charity event.


€170 minimum commitment to sign up with a charity:

At time of writing, more than 10% of all people who registered to cycle with a charity in last year’s cycle haven’t returned their agreed sponsorship.

To ensure this doesn’t happen again and to protect the charities, those cycling with a charity are asked to fundraise a minimum of €170.

The reason for this figure is that this was the average amount raised by fundraisers who cycled with a charity in 2015’s event.


‘The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle has become a small business’:

The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle is run by a group of people who are passionate about the event and who share the one collective goal – to raise as much money as possible for the people of Kerry.

All are volunteers and all give up endless hours for over 6 months of the year to ensure our fundraising event is as beneficial as it can be for both the fundraisers and the charities.

Every year over 30 charities receive assistance, 10 main and 20-25 other smaller charities with over 1500 volunteers providing their time to ensure the successful running of the event.

The ROK Charity Cycle is often compared to other sportives but we are exclusively a fundraising cycle and not a sportive.

We would like to re-iterate that all decisions made by the committee are made with the intention of maximising the funds that are raised to support local charities in Kerry. These funds are vital to the work these charities carry out and without your support, many of the charities that the cycle supports would no longer be in operation. All decisions made are compliant with the charity regulator.

The charity places are also filling up fast. Anyone who wishes to go this route and make the extra commitment to raise upwards of €170 can find the list of charity contact on

Finally we would like to remind people that Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle is volunteer run event that allows fundraisers to raise money for worthwhile charities, they just happen to do it while cycling one of the greatest cycling routes in the world!

The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle Committee