The Etape du Dales is a gruelling 112mile cycling sportive that set off from Threshfield (Grassington) in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The route climbs over a number of significant hills inluding Fleet Moss, Buttertubs, Tan House Hill, Coal Road and Dale Head. The total amount of climbing (and descent) is 9170 feet (2795 meters).
The first 10 miles of the route follows the Tour De France (Le Grand Depart) stage 1 from Threshfield to Buckden. The route then peels off to do the brutal but beautiful climb over Fleet Moss at about 18 miles into the route, there is then a long before descent into the small Dales town of Hawes. When in Hawes the Etape du Dales rejoins the Tour de France stage 1 route to ascend the Buttertubs pass at about 25 miles into the route. The Buttertubs Pass has an official category 3 rating for the Tour De France and is a popular climb with cyclists trying to gain the King of the Mountains on the Strava app. The route continues into Swaledale before leaving the TdF route before it reaches Reeth at Low Row. The Etape du Dales then heads off to climb the Tan House Hill but first there is the climb over to Arkengarthdale. Tan house hill is at about 46 miles into the route. Before starting its homeward leg. At 70 miles the Old Coal Road is a hard climb with all those miles in the legs, it passes Dent Station the highest mainline railway station in the UK before descending into the pretty vally bottom. The Etape du Dales continues along the vally gently climbing at first before another big climb from Stonehouse towards Newby Head. A descent is then enjoyed to iconic Ribblehead viaduct and continues to Stainforth before the final big hill of the day climbing to Dalehead at aproximately 90 miles.
The route of Etape du Dales is a cycling sportive challenge and is not officially a race (however the fastest time for completing the route is just a little over 5 hours and 43 mins).
The ride is organised by the Dave Raynor Fund. The Dave Rayner Fund was set up in his memory on 12 January 1995, to help riders make a career from racing on the continent. (Wikipedia)
Fred Whitton Challenge Photos 2014 will be posted on Racing Snakes photo albums soon after the race, the pictures link will be live once the photos are published. The photos of the Fred Whitton Challenge can also be seen on my Facebook page here
The Fred Whitton challenge is a 112 mile challenge cycling sportive around the Lake District National Park. The Fred Whitton Challenge route starts and finishes from the Showground in Grasmere. The route goes in an anti-clockwise direction and takes in the Cols (mountain passes) at Kirkstone, Honister, Newlands Hause, Whinlatter, Hardknott, and Wrynose. This sportive is recognised as one of the hardest cycling sportives in the country, it has 10,779 ft (3285 meters) of ascent. The ascent over the Harknott pass is one of the steepest roads in the UK with 30% gradient, and this is in the latter end of the route so the legs are tired. The full route of the Fred Whitton Challenge can be seen here
The fastest time will be around the 5 hours and 50 mins mark with the slowest time around double that at 12 hours 30 mins. The Fred Whitton Challenge is expected to attract around 2000 riders. There are various feed stations and check points on the route. The ride is very well organised and has become the ‘must do’ sportive of many riders and thus has become one of the most popular rides in the sportive calendar and usually sells out well in advance of the ride.
Ride London 100: Possibly the biggest cycling event Britain has ever seen.
Demand for places in the inaugural RideLondon100 is anticipated to outstrip supply, the entry process will shut when 75,000 people are registered or no later 4th January 2013. 20,000 amateur cyclists are expected to take part in this 100 mile ride which is a modified version of the London 2012 Olympic Road Race route. It is anticipated that the event will be over-subscribed and that a ballot will be held to allocate places in the event. Further details