Wednesday, December 31

2008 - A fabulous year of cycling

Objective to cycle over 8,000m in height gained - 24,872m done!

There's no ride quite like the Mt. Shasta Summit Century. Challenging climbs. Breathtaking views. Lightly trafficked, rural roads. And a cloverleaf route that encourages you to test yourself -- you're never more than a downhill away from home.
Held in the stunning alpine environment surrounding 14,162' Mount Shasta, the Mount Shasta Summit Century is an endless parade of breathtaking views – and a challenging set of climbs. A cloverleaf route allows you to really challenge yourself; if you can't climb another foot, you simply turn around -- the finish is only a downhill away. Our 135 mile Super Century features 16,500' of climbing. It's tougher than the Death Ride – but a lot prettier, and a better first ride for those who are new to hilly, mega-century rides.

This classic sportive is a magnificent challenge for experienced and motivated cyclists. For the last three years your praise and feedback has allowed us to raise the bar on the course design standards – a balance between acknowledged challenging climbs, fast time-trial type sections, enduring rolling Wolds and excellent food and water stations. This year we you have set the pinnacle standard – no route changes to the course!
Leave Highclere Castle and head for one of the toughest combination climbs over Walbury Hill and Faccombe Hill to connect with the Bourne and Test Valley runs to Stockbridge. Enjoy the rolling Wolds that follow to the first main Control at Sparsholt, Nr Winchester (42mile/68km).
The second stage is all about riding the South Downs. After a steady section to Twyford Down the South Downs challenge begins and includes Old Winchester Hill and Harting Hill. Recover on the rolling roads to the second main Control at Owens Cycles Steep, Nr Petersfield (42mile/67km).
The third stage begins with an aggressive climb over Stoner Hill and continues to Medstead. Recover as you ride the Candovers. At 100+miles gear up for the long drag climb to Hannington - it's a real tester! Continue over White Hill and Watership Down and re-enter Highclere Castle grounds for that grand finale finish (42mile/67km).

The Tour of the Black Mountains, always scenic and at times spectacular, the 85 mile short and 115 mile long courses visited both the Black Mountains and Brecon Beacons.  The routes took in some punishing climbs, including the so called ‘hill with no name’ and the sting-in-the-tail ascent out of  Llangynidr. The latter was encountered at the 100 mile point, just as many wilting riders were simply hoping to grind their way home without further pain.

The Dragon Ride cyclosportive is a circular, 125 or 185km non competitive road cycle challenge ride over the beautiful hills and valleys of South Wales. With around 3000m of climbing, the route takes in the classic Milk Race/Tour of Britain climbs of the Bwlch, Rhigos and Brecon Beacons mountain roads. The Dragon Ride was one of the first annual cyclosportives to be held in the UK and the first to gain a place on the UCI calendar. The ride is based at Pencoed, just outside Cardiff and has excellent road, rail and international air links. 2009 will be the sixth occasion this event has been held. The route takes riders east through Llantrisant Forest (The Smilog), Coedely and Gilfach Goch. This new loop includes three short sharp climbs before we rejoin the route used last year in Blackmill. This section is followed by the first major climb of the day The Bwlch, 20 miles from the start. The Bwlch Mountain road is once again climbed twice, the second time on the return leg from the Afan Valley (the longest ascent of this mountain road). The climb over Llangeinor Mountain with it's tricky descent will be the final hill of the day on the run back to the finish.

L’Étape du Tour (French for ’stage of the Tour’) is an organised mass participation cyclosportive event that allows amateur cyclists to race over the same route as a Tour de France stage. First held in 1993, and organised by the Amaury Sport Organisation, ASO (in conjunction with Vélo Magazine), it takes place each July, normally on a Tour rest day.
L’Etape du Tour is normally held over mountain roads in either the Pyrenees or French Alps, up climbs such as the Col du Galibier, Col d’Aubisque, Mont Ventoux or the Col du Tourmalet.

The Cape Argus Pic’n‘Pay is quite simply the BIGGEST Cyclo Sportive in the world.
South Africa’s Cape Argus Pick ‘n Pay Cycle Tour, is, quite simply, the world’s largest individually timed cycle race – and the first event outside Europe to be included in the International Cycling Union’s Golden Bike Series – with over 35 000 cyclists tackling a 109km route around Cape Town that is as spectacular as it is gruelling.

RACE KM Meters Climbed TIME AVG SPEED km/h
Mt Shasta Summit 217km 5,029m 10:13 21.2
Highclere Castle 200km 3,040m 08:30 25.5
Tour of the Black Mountains 182km 3,793m 08:04 22.6
Dragon Ride Wales 180km 3,000m 06:38 27.1
L'Étape du Tour Mondovélo 169km 3,000m 07:45 21.8
White Horse Challenge 150km 1,400m 05:29 27.4
Etape Caledonia 130km 1,949m 04:09 31.3
Cape Argus 109km 1,080m 05:23 20.25
Mayhem Classic Sportive 100Km 1,721m 04:34 21.9
Autmn Epic - DNF 56km 860m 02:12 25.8
TOTAL 1,493km 24,872m 62:45 24.5

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