Details of a new closed road sportive in the UK have emerged. The 100-mile Etape Cymru will start and finish in Wrexham, North Wales on 9 October.
The sportive, which has the support of the Welsh Assembly government and British Cycling, will feature 6,191ft of climbing and will take in well known ascents such as Horseshoe Pass and The Shelf.
Roads will remain closed to a minimum speed of 12mph, at which point riders will ride with traffic. However, the signposted route will remain open until every rider has finished. And rather than the staggered start common with many sportives, all riders will set off at the same time.
Entry costs £65 for non-British Cycling members and £53 for those who are. For non-BC members, entry will get you a one-year British Cycling Ride membership worth £24. Applications are capped to 3,500 riders and are being accepted until 16 August. A detailed route map is available here.
As part of the event, organisers are running The Horseshoe Pass Challenge, which allows entrants to tackle the 6.1km climb at any time of the year. You can then email your time to them and they'll publish it on the Etape Cymru website.
Organiser Mike Turner told BikeRadar he hopes the event, held in one of the most picturesque areas of the country, will be the first of many. "We've been planning the event since before Christmas last year, and as with any closed road bike ride it's been challenging," he said. "But the two councils involved (Wrexham and Denbighshire) have been unbelievably helpful. Their energy in getting everything in place has been excellent."
To enter the Etape Cymru, visit the events website.