By Sinéad Goldsboro
Former County Hurler Michael Cleary has set many records and has won many accolades in his time but last weekend saw Michael pedal his way to history in a very unusual way and all in the name of charity.
Michael, along with Robert Quinlan, pedalled two BERG pedal go-karts 80km through Tipperary from Clonmel to Nenagh to raise funds for Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin.
After a very wet start in Clonmel on Friday morning, Michael and Robert made their way through Cahir, Cashel and Thurles on Friday and the next day they started in Roscrea, then on to Moneygall and Toomevara before arriving in Nenagh on Saturday afternoon. At every step or pedal of the way, people came out to show their support and cheer them on while making very generous donations.
Michael told the Tipperary Star that this was a unique challenge as it was the first go-kart charity pedal of is kind to be done in Ireland, it has been done on the Continent some time ago.
From the outset the idea was very well received and supported. Michael would like to thank all of those who were involved in the event especially Robert, the staff of Crumlin, Berg (who supplied the go-karts), Order of Malta and Gardai. Michael wanted to give the staff at his stores in Nenagh and Thurles a special thank you as they had worked tirelessly since March in organising and promoting the event. He said that people don’t see the background work that is involved in fundraising on a scale such as this and said it would not have been possible without such a supportive team behind him.
He also wanted to stay a big thank you to GAA clubs that provided pitstops along the way - St Mary’s, Rockwell Rovers, Cashel, Durlas Og, Roscrea, Moneygall, Toomevara and Nenagh. The kids were dressed in their club colours and welcomed them at each stop.
The final figure was not available at the time of going to print but Michael said that they had reached their target of E10,000 and more money was still coming in. All proceeds will go to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin.