You've finished your winter base training, now it's time to up the tempo and see how fit you are as the season begins. PUNCHEUR also offers a rare opportunity in a UK sportive: a summit finish. Arguably the best climb in the south east.
The challenge of PUNCHEUR is not a long list of testing climbs, neither is it mega-endurance. The challenge is to keep up a consistent tempo across long, flat stretches, draggy climbs, fast descents, and short, sharp steeper hills when you can get out the saddle and punch your way over.
This is a course to be taken head on, knowing you don't have to hold back due to 100 miles or more ahead of you, but can you still judge it so you don't blow up early, AND, also make sure you have something in the legs to get you up Ditchling Beacon at the end?
The route finishes with the most famous South Downs climb - Ditchling Beacon - which averages 9% for its 1km or so, with the occasional ramp up to 12%. Check in your timing chip at the top, take in the view, then it's back down the Beacon to the HQ in Ditchling Village for a bowl of pasta and a hot drink (included in entry fee), and where everyone sits around chatting about their ride.
The fully-signed route runs along picturesque unclassified roads and quiet B roads, with a minimum of turns or technical features. The aim is to give you every chance to get into a steady rhythm and press on at the pace you want to, but you will have to work hard to do that as you meet the drags and punchy little hills.
For this distance, only 1 feedstation is necessary (about half way - 34 miles), but there will also be warm food back at the HQ, included in the price, and out on the road there will be a broom wagon to collect anyone who is unlucky enough to have serious mechanical. Our main sponsor, Infinity Foods, supplies amazing food at the feedstation.
More details, including the route and course profile, can be found at www.puncheur.co.uk.!
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