Cyclists have been getting the miles in all over the Western Isles and beyond, as the annual Butt2Barra fundraising cycle ride keeps on rolling despite social distancing.
In small teams, as duos and as individuals, cyclists have been getting their wheels rolling round the Westside, Point, Tolsta and Stornoway, as well as through the Uists and as far away as Glasgow to raise funds for Bethesda Hospice.
Butt2Barra 2020 has been less of a logistical challenge than usual, with no need to try and plan for over 30 cyclists travelling the length of the Western Isles over three days. Organisers took the 165-mile pedal-a-thon online to encourage wide participation, following the lead of many sporting events since lockdown began.
As a result up to 50 cyclists are taking part this year, with new cyclists joining the stalwart annual participants to attempt 165 miles – the official length of the real route from the Butt of Lewis down to Castlebay – before Wednesday (8 July).
Among the newcomers have been Uilleam Macleod and Innes Scott of Peat & Diesel fame, both blowing away the cobwebs as they challenge the pain to cover (they hope) 35-40 miles a day each. They’re planning to finish the ride together on Wednesday.
Stacey Macrury and Rhoda MacCormick are covering their miles around South Uist and Eriskay, Alan Mackay dubbed his ride ‘tour de Glaschu’ and seasoned Butt2Barra rider Murdo Macdonald smashed the distance in just two days.
The team total on JustGiving at https://www.justgiving.com/team/Butt2Barra2020 has already passed £6,000 – there are ten linked pages to be found from the main page, with more than £6,000 already given between them.
Organisers hailed the ‘fantastic team effort’ and are sharing pictures and route details from those taking part on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/butt.barra.9
Pictures show – six keen cyclists, including Peat & Diesel’s Innes Scott (right) reaching Callanish at the halfway stage in their challenge, fellow band member Uilleam Macleod putting up with rain and midges in Point and Stacey Macrury and Rhoda MacCormick smiling through the miles in South Uist.