The Fred Whitton Challenge

30% is no joke at 90 miles in. Photo by Steve Flemming

I should have known this guy had gone too deep too soon. He was aero-tucking at 20mph on the flat and riding on his top tube like he’s Chris Froome. His ambition must have got the better of him. He seems to be looking for any aero gain he can to make it round easily, but we’re only 20ish miles in and haven’t hit a serious climb yet. I see signs for the A66 and turn to see Morgan just behind me, a guy I’ve been riding with on and off for most of the way so far. “Yes! We’ve got a group!” I say as Captain Aero, myself and Morgan set off down the A66. I take the front and do my turn. Captain Aero takes over and goes all out to impress somebody. I’m not even pedalling and I’m cruising at 40mph on Captain Aero’s wheel, awesome stuff! He pulls to the side of the road and disappears never to be seen again. I presume he’s still trying to aero-tuck his way up Honister pass?   Continue reading

The Dragon Ride – Dragon Devil Route – 305km

The Dragon Devil route is a long and hilly day in the saddle. And when I say day, I mean all day!

For me a cycling event is not a “challenge” unless I’m unsure if I can actually finish it, that’s the point of a challenge right? It has to be personally challenging. Many sportives pick a route of similar length to a cycling club’s Sunday ride and give you a medal at the end. Now to many that is a challenge (everybody is different, lets not get elitist here) but I have enough confidence in my abilities to know that I could finish an 80 or 100mile (160km) route even if it has a lot of climbing. The Dragon Ride offered something I found truly challenging, the longest single day route; the Dragon Devil offering  189 miles (305km) with something like 4000m of climbing. Now I don’t know about you, but that sounded pretty daunting. That would be one sportive medal I would be proud to earn.

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Castelli 24 Ore (Hour) Race – Feltre, Italy

c24_climb

“Do you fancy doing a 24 hour race in Italy?” Just sounded like a better experience than “are you doing the crit on Tuesday night? looks like it might rain”. Not that I had to choose between one or the other, but I personally needed something a bit more exotic to inspire me to keep cycling/training through the depths of the British winter. The Castelli 24 Ore (hour) race in Feltre, Italy; on the edge of the Dolomites national park, is a criterium race run on a 1.9km circuit in the centre of the city. The race runs for 24 hours and can be ridden either solo or as part of a team (8 – 12 people).   Continue reading