Thousands descend on Highland Perthshire for Etape Caledonia 2024

Thousands of cyclists from all over the UK pedalled across the Scottish Highlands at Etape Caledonia 2024 today (12 May), celebrating the 18th edition of the UK’s original closed road sportive and mass participation cycling event.

Organised by new owners Motiv Sports UK, over 4000 cyclists travelled to Pitlochry to take on the annual sportive, including Stirling Firefighter Calum Easton who cycled the 85 mile route to raise money for SiMBA and The Brain Tumour Charity. Etape Caledonia is Calum’s fifth physical challenge fundraiser of the year.

Three route options were, once again available, tailored for both experienced cyclists and for those looking to push their limits including a 40-mile, 55-mile and 85-mile route. These routes include taking on the mighty Schiehallion climb, passing the beautiful banks of Loch Rannoch and Loch Tummel, and passing through picturesque Highland Perthshire villages.

Participants were able to pedal safely on peaceful closed roads, with cyclists and their supporters enjoying the convivial atmosphere of the mass participation sports event, which has given the economy of Highland Perthshire a significant boost.

Beginning in Pitlochry at 6.30am this morning from the start line on Atholl Road, the first finishers began arriving back in town at around 8.40am to collect their well-earned medal and enjoy the local hospitality and the festive atmosphere in the Event Village.

First over the finish line for each category were:

  • 40 Mile Route: John Hayes from Pitlochry (Men: 1h 58m 48s) and Tara Walsh from Livingston (Women: 2h 23m 17s)
  • 55 Mile Route: Xavier Disley from Malvern (Men: 2h 34m 48s) and Jessica Rhodes-Jones from Malvern (Women: 2h 34m 48s)
  • 85 Mile Route: Scott Meldrum from Livingston (Men: 3h 37m 18s) and Leah Cuthberston from Leicester (Women: 3h 51m 06s)

The fastest times on the course were set this year by:

  • 40 Mile Route: John Hayes from Pitlochry (1h 58m 48s)
  • 55 Mile Route: Jessica Rhodes-Jones and Xavier Disley from Malvern (Both 2h 34m 48s)
  • 85 Mile Route: Tom Miller from London (3h 35m 26s)

Many participants were also fundraising for a range of charities including Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance, The Brain Tumour Charity, Finding Your Feet, SiMBA, Pancreatic Cancer UK and Marie Curie.

Calum MacLellan, owner of four star visitor destination Taste Perthshire, together with his sons Connor and Brodie, completed the 85 mile route. They celebrated finishing the mass cycling participation event by having raised funds for the Ruth Strauss Foundation, in memory of Calum’s best friend Cameron who passed away earlier this year from lung cancer. They had both previously taken part in the Etape Caledonia together for ten years.

Calum said: “We started doing Etape Caledonia in 2012 and kept it going each year. We were part of a team known as ‘the Flying Corbies’. The last one Cameron took part in was in May 2022 after he was diagnosed with non-smoking lung cancer. So we teamed up with Cameron’s two sons Archie and Jay, Cameron’s cousin Christopher, his nephew Ben and friends to take part in his memory. We are raising money for the Ruth Strauss Foundation to support its vital work in the fight against non-smokers lung cancer. The cause hits home after losing Cameron this year. He always rode alongside us during this event and, while this year has felt different without him, we’ve completed the route for him.”

The event also welcomed a 40 strong group of riders, supported to participate by Fund Her Tri UK (FHT UK), a charity which aims to bring more gender, racial and religious diversity to triathlon and cycling events. The group includes a large contingent of riders from Cycle Sisters, an award-winning charity which inspires and enables Muslim women to cycle.

Jo Dytch, Event Director, commented:

“We’re delighted to have welcomed so many cyclists to the event this year, with many new faces amongst the throng of cyclists who love coming back year on year.  Etape Caledonia is truly a one of a kind cycling sportive. It is a rite of passage for road cyclists right across the UK who love the experience of cycling on closed roads among such dramatic scenery.

“Taking part in a sportive of this scale, in stunning surroundings and on peaceful closed roads is a tremendous experience. My congratulations go to everyone who has embraced the physical challenge and completed the course. A great achievement! I’d also like to thank the local community of Highland Perthshire who came out in their droves to support the cyclists and offer a warm Scottish welcome. We are already looking forward to the next edition which takes place on 11 May 2025.”

For those looking to participate next year, places for Etape Caledonia 2025 are on sale now. To register, please visit:

For more information on this release please contact The Cunningly Good Group on 01738 658187.

The Cunningly Good Group is one of Scotland’s leading independent marketing agencies.

The Perth based multi-award winning marketing agency offers clients a strategic one stop shop, spanning the full marketing discipline, including marketing strategy, communications and public relations, graphic design and website development. The blended agency, founded by entrepreneur Tricia Fox in 2002, has worked with some of Scotland’s best known brands including The Enchanted Forest, Scone Palace and HMS Unicorn.

The Cunningly Good Group is one of only three other communications agencies in Scotland to have achieved the Communications Management Standard (CMS) accreditation, as awarded by the  industry’s professional body, the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) for companies that demonstrate operational excellence.