If you’re itching to get an early season event under your belt, then look no further than the Wiggle New Forest Sportive taking place on 30 March at Pylewell Park.
There are three routes to choose from, all of which start and finish at the historic country house. Highlights include the woodlands at Rhinefield Ornamental Drive, the old smugglers' cove of Bucklers Hard and sweeping views at Roger Penny Way.
Whatever route you choose, there’s plenty of stunning new New Forest scenery to enjoy as you ride.
The Long Route is 102 miles/164km and has an elevation of 3,327ft/1,015m. Riders will travel through chocolate box villages such as Woodgreen and Godshill, then take the short, sharp challenge of Blissford Hill with its 25 percent gradient.
The Classic Route totals 82 miles/132km with an elevation of 2,546ft/776m. The route provides excellent views from Roger Penny Way, before heading through Godshill and on to Blissford Hill.
With a distance of 38 miles/57km and only 784ft/239m of climbing, the Short Route is ideal for new riders or those still shaking winter rust from their legs. Riders will head towards Bucklers Hard before heading north, passing through Ashurst and many other picturesque spots.
A stately event village
The unique location of Pylewell Park is home to the event village and provides a beautiful setting to prepare for and relax before and after your ride.
There will be plenty of parking, stalls selling new kit and sportive essentials, cakes, coffee and hot food, with vegan and gluten-free options available. Wiggle is also promising an abundance of well-kept toilets!
A big hit at last year’s Kent Classic was the Wiggle (wheel) of Fortune and it will be making an appearance here. Spin the wheel to nab yourself all kinds of prizes.
During your ride
There will be plenty of feed stations along each fully signposted and marshalled route. Each station will be well-stocked by the event’s nutrition partner, High 5, where it will be handing out its full range of products and a whole lot more.
To help you out in just about every eventuality, Wiggle has employed a team of Ride Captains to lend a hand if you need it. As well as providing mechanical expertise, they will be carrying plenty of tools and spare inner tubes.
Should your bike end up being beyond a roadside repair, you will be able to call on the Wiggle team who will lend you a bike enabling you to finish the event.
For the non-cyclists
For accompanying family and friends with more interest in running than riding, Salomon will be hosting two trail running events as well as a plogging (that’s picking up litter while you jog, for those that don’t know) guided run through the Pylewell estate and the New Forest. All levels welcome.
It will also have new shoes and kit to try out on the day.
Entry for the Long and Classic routes costs £35, while the Short route costs £30.
For more information, route and entry details visit the Wiggle New Forest Sportive event page.