Etape Hibernia attracts nearly 2,000 riders

County Clare closed-road sportive now in its second year

Around 2,000 riders took to the start of the second edition of the Etape Hibernia in Ennis, Ireland on Sunday. The 84-mile closed-road sportive, which took in the lanes of County Clare, is part of the Sky Ride series, and is the Irish version of the Etape Caledonia.

That event, held in Scotland in May, has been blighted in recent years by sabotage, with tacks being found strewn across sections of the route on two of the past three years. But the ride on Sunday, which saw Irish cycling legend Sean Kelly among its competitors, suffered no such fate.

Closed-road rides like this are rare in the UK and Ireland, with only the Etape Caledonia and the upcoming inaugural Etape Cymru known to us as events that shut out motorists. Organisers are already taking bookings for the 2012 ride, which you can enter here for €54. Check out the photo gallery for highlights from last weekend.

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