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New Route Unveiled for Alpine Challenge Including 2016 Tour de France Cols

by Nick Gregory

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Entry for HotChillee's Alpine Challenge is now open, with a variety of packages including luxury lake rooms, shared apartments and a family options available. The new route for the 2016 edition will cover 345km and just under 7,000m of climbing. 

The route will  take in some of the classic Tour de France climbs, including Col de la Colombière - used 20 times previously in the Tour de France, and which will feature again on Stage 18 in 2016. 

New for the Alpine Challenge 2016:

  • Earlier date: 1-5 June 2016
  • New route with Tour classics: Col de Colombière, Col de Leschaux and Col des Saisies
  • "Social Group" for riders who want to focus on meters climbed, not how fast they climb them
  • "Family package" for half-term - loads to do in Annecy for the family
  • Special package available for the "London-Paris / Alpine Challenge Double" 

For full route details click here.  

AC1

The Prologue (9km, 600m)  

A punchy 9km timed climb up Col de la Forclaz where riders are seeded for the stages ahead:

Race Group - 29km/h+
Ride Group - 26km/h+
Social Group - 23km/h+ 

Stage 1 (135km and 2,700m)  

Stage one includes the 14km Col des Saisies - often used in the Tour, most recently in 2010. The total climb is over 900m with an average gradient of 6.4%.  

Stage 2 (110km and 2,000m)  

Stage two takes in the category 3 climb of Col de Leschaux.  At 12 kilometres, it's fairly long, but it's seldom steep and with the stunning views of lake Annecy to distract you it's a breeze compared to what lies ahead - Le Revard! Used twice in the Tour (both times for a summit finishes) riders will enjoy a well-earned lunch at the top of this iconic climb whilst enjoying views across the Alps as far as Mont Blanc. 

HC2

HC3

Stage 3 (110km and 2,100m)  

Stage three features Col de Bluffy (only 2.2 km long but a riders favourite) before taking on the Tour classic - Col de la Colombière. Although the pass is not very high, it is technically difficult for cyclists and a Tour de France favourite - being used over 20 times previously.  

With the new June date for the Alpine Challenge, it follows immediately after the London-Paris. Organisers HotChillee have held back several places on the already sold out London-Paris event for riders who want to "do the double" and travel straight from Paris to Annecy.  

Enter both and you will not only have the opportunity to enter the "Double Jersey" competition, but you will also receive £150 off the entry price of the second event. Plus, HotChillee will transport your bike for you from Paris to Annecy! You can meet it there via the fantastic TGV service which connects the two from as little as €25. 

HC4

HC5

Paris-Roubaix legend, Magnus Backstedt rode the event in 2014: "I was pushed to my extremes and loved it. I tip my hat to the passionate sportive riders who pushed themselves beyond their limits."  

This year, after riding the event for the second time, Jon Leighton of JML Racing and the UCI Mass Participation Commission said: "HotChillee's Alpine Challenge is the best amateur European alpine stage race. Fully supported, rolling road closures, awesome climbs, beautiful scenery, nothing else to think about apart from riding your bike as hard and fast as you can muster. A unique experience not to be missed. See you in 2016."  

For more information visit http://www.thealpinechallenge.com/.





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