'It's a very long hallway,' says cyclist, 74, as he clocks up 1,200kms in lockdown for frontline staff

A 74-year-old veteran cyclist has used his lockdown to clock up at least 1200 kilometres from his hallway cocoon and vows to pedal-on daily for frontline staff until all Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.
'It's a very long hallway,' says cyclist, 74, as he clocks up 1,200kms in lockdown for frontline staff
Navan Road Club member Larry Clarke has notched up more than €200,000 already for various charities.

A 74-year-old veteran cyclist has used his lockdown to clock up at least 1200 kilometres from his hallway cocoon and vows to pedal-on daily for frontline staff until all Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.

Navan Road Club member Larry Clarke has refused to put the brakes on his cycling and instead hooked up his bike to indoor rollers to try and raise some funds for Our Lady's Hospital in the town.

The Slane resident has taken part in hundreds of races, leisure and charity events over the last 55 years with the club and has notched up over €200,000 already for various charities including ARC Cancer Support.

"I just couldn't do nothing and cocoon," he said.

"So I set up the rollers and decided to cycle for the frontline staff at Our Lady's Hospital until all these restrictions are lifted.

Staff at Our Lady's Hospital have always been very supportive of all Navan Road Club's events and were always available if any of the cyclists needed aid with injuries or falls.

"I do about 40km a day, maybe more depending on my mood. I started on May 5th so I suppose I've cycled at least 1200km now - it's a very long hallway.

"Since the restrictions were lifted a little, I've been out on a few local roads but I'm looking forward to being able to cycle the highways and byways again.

"The bike is good for the mind and the body and sure everyone seems to have realised that now in lockdown because it's very hard to find a bike to buy now that everyone is out cycling.

"There are over 100 in the Navan Road Club and I miss that interaction. I'd only take part now in the leisure events but I'd be still able to cycle about 80km in an event, with a stop off for tea of course.

"I enjoy the spins and I enjoy looking at all the scenery. On the bike in my house, I can only look at the wife Mary - not that I'd ever get sick of looking at her of course" he chuckled.

"Everyone has been so supportive of me, especially the club and Slane Tidy Towns who are wonderful

"I'll keep going on the bike for frontliners until this is all over. Sure isn't it great to be able to do it and to be doing something for someone else."

Anyone who would like to donate can do so at https://www.gofundme.com/f/7cmn4w.

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