Looking for a lumpy challenge in Surrey with some lovely countryside to gaze at whilst your'e preparing yourself for the next onslaught?! Here it is!:
NITP Ride Breakdown:
0-10miles: Starting from the footballers wives town of Cobham, cut into Downside and enjoy the calm before the storm because your first drag is not far away. Traffic will be quite minimal so take the opportunity to warm up for the Polka Dot Challenge, a drag from Effingham Station all the way up to Ranmore Common.
10-20miles: Your climbing is rewarded with a fast descent down the common into Dorking (do watch out as there are a couple of hidden bends). Follow the cycle path along the a24 till you come to the roundabout by Rykers, if you need an early fuel up, grab a greasy egg and bacon bap, you won't need to eat again for a week! If you haven't climbed Box before, where have you been?! Just remember elevation doesn't stop until you head down to Headley. The descent down Pebble Hill Road is quick and hairy as the road surface is not great so ride on the hoods on the way down.
20-30miles: Take a drink, consume some gels, take a selfie! Technically this is half time. These back lanes are a joy to cruise on, look out for and take advantage of any village stops along route as they will be few and far between. Might become noisy once you near Gatwick, don't try to race the planes unless your frame has some sort of mechanical assistance?!
Maillot Vert Challenge: Charlwood Rd, Crawley, 1.2km
30-40miles: This is a slightly lumpy section which will re-warm the legs, ideal time to make sure you are fuelled up for the latter part of this route. Landscape becomes woody but the road surface is decent, if its wet, just keep out of the mucky gutter. If you are feeling brave, throw in Leith Hill for the added challenge!
Maillot Vert Challenge: B2126 Ockley Rd, 1.9km
40-50miles: Save the best till last they say and you get it in a double climb! Turning right out of Ewhurst, Pitch Hill will hit you in the face. Tough little climb, mile long with a max at 17%, you'll appreciate the respite on the Houndhouse Rd descent which takes you into the picturesque town of Shere. Climb number 2 is the grind of Combe Lane. We refer her to Whitedown's annoying neighbour and its the hairpin on the last section of this climb which will burn. Once at the top, breathe, relax, throw up....
Polka Dot Challenge #1: Pitch Hill, Ewhurst, 1.6km, 17% max
Polka Dot Challenge #2: Combe Lane, Shere, 1.5km, 28% max
50-57miles: You've earnt this wind down back into Cobham but if you somehow have anything left in the legs, take advantage of the drop in elevation and push for home or that hot chocolate we always bark on about!