The Welsh Iron Mountain Sportif is back for 2009 and is now a two-day event incorporating different routes to suit riders of all abilities.
This year’s Sportif will be held on Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 June to mark the start of the week-long Abergavenny Festival of Cycling.
The festival also includes the Welsh Open Criterium and Robert Price Grand Prix of Wales.
“It’s always nice to get the visitors here in Abergavenny to ride the Grand Prix of Wales course,” said organiser Bill Owen, “but we thought it would be even better for people to have two days to enjoy the spectacular scenery around our beautiful county.
“Also, it gives people the chance to choose which day they would like to ride and, for some, whether they would like to try the Iron Mountain, plus some of the most competitive countryside in South Powys,” he added.
The Saturday events will see cyclists in the Bronze Ride enjoying the flatlands of Monmouthshire. The Silver Ride includes another 25 miles along the undulating roads between Monmouth and Abergavenny, while the Gold Ride passes the World Heritage Sites around Blaenavon on the descent of the Iron Mountain and the Brecon Beacons National Park.
On Sunday, the Bronze Ride skirts around North Monmouthshire and the Usk Valley, while the Silver Ride includes testing descents to Tintern Abbey and past the Rolls Estate, named after one half of Rolls-Royce. Sunday’s Gold Ride includes a 1,000-foot descent from Pwll Du into the valley below.
“These will suit everyone and, of course, there’s no reason why riders can’t stay over in the area overnight and tackle two of the courses over the weekend,” said Owen.
Entries are available at the Abergavenny Festival of Cycling website.