Bec CC Hill Climb

On Sunday I rounded off my ‘hill climb season’ (all relative) with the infamous Bec CC event on White Lane in Surrey. I had to send apologies to the Catford CC event on Yorks Hill in the morning owed to the 2017 Glastonbury ticket sale. Arriving at the Bec event around 2pm it was clear…

Denbies Duels 2016

When one eye-popping, lung-bursting, leg-wrecking hill climb effort isn’t enough for one weekend, do another one the next day. That’s what I signed up for last weekend by following Saturday’s Urban Hill Climb up Swain’s Lane with the Denbies Duels on Sunday. The setting is the total opposite of Swain’s, with the high brick walls…

Urban Hill Climb 2016

Swain’s Lane is London’s most iconic climb, and 2016 saw the return of the Urban Hill Climb to the road. Organised by Rollapaluza and sponsored by Rapha, this was the first time the event had gone ahead since 2013 and attracted cyclists from across the country to test themselves on the 900m course. I was…

Rat Race Coast to Coast 2016

Back in December last year I was looking for something challenging to do in 2016, ideally somewhere I hadn’t been before and involving something a bit novel along the way. After ruling out Ironmans on cost and originality grounds and marathons on a monotony basis, I ended up settling on the Rat Race Coast to…

The French Alps

I’ve just spent 6 days cycling in the Alps around St Jean de Maurienne and Annecy with some mates. I could write a huge spiel about each day, but that’s probably a bit repetitive so here’s the Thirteen Things I Learnt From Cycling in the Alps. People who say you can’t train for the Alps in…

London River Rat Race

  On Saturday I took to the start line of my first ever obstacle race. It’s another Rat Race event and thanks to my entry into the Scotland C2C event in September I could enter this for free. The start centre was in the cavernous halls of ExCeL in the Docklands and was a standard…

Gospel Pass

Climb in a sentence. Goes on and on and on and on up what is the longest climb and highest paved road in Wales, but the hard bits come early allowing you time to enjoy the views back towards Lord Hereford’s Knob (lol) and Hay on Wye. View rating. 9/10. From the start of the plateau…

Rhigos Mountain

Climb in a sentence. A real treat, emerging from an innocuous dual carriageway near Hirwaun which keeps unfolding ahead, keeping the summit out of sight until the final moments after negotiating the final couple of alpine switchbacks. View rating. 9/10. There’s a bit of everything from the summit, with a dramatic rocky face leading to a…

The Tumble

Climb in a sentence. Once you’re clear of the trees, this just keeps getting better and better as the gradients level off and the views open up down to your right hand side in the valley. View rating. 8/10. Would be a 9 if it weren’t for slightly more traffic than you would ideally have on…

Llangynidr Mountain

Climb in a sentence. Long slog up 3.6miles of variable gradients with a false summit two thirds of the way up preceding a final steep section to the summit. View rating. 8/10. There’s a reason why Top Gear love filming here, the final section after the false summit is the best bit. Difficulty rating. 7/10 Strava Link

The Monster

Billed as ‘The UK’s toughest sportive’, The Monster was never going to be a straightforward day on the bike. With 1000m more climbing than the renowned Fred Whitton challenge in the Lake District, The Monster packed in 4200m (13,779ft) of up into just 195km (120m) of forwards, which is a lot. On Saturday morning we…

The Devil’s Staircase

Climb in a sentence. Box Hill on EPO, don’t think I’ve ever sworn so much on a climb, with wall-like gradients, inclement conditions and no sight of when it may ever end, this is one aptly named climb. View rating. 8/10. Shrouded in cloud when I rode it, the roads and valleys round here clearly hold some…