Etape du Tour
For those of you riding the first stage of the Tour de France route with us on the 15th June I have made a few amendments. If we had stuck to my original plans we would have started off riding the wrong way through the one way system in Harrogate, also once you start to look at the TDF route it’s apparent that many of the roads on the course around Harrogate and over to Skipton are very busy A roads and not pleasant or safe to ride on.
I’m afraid I haven’t got the powers of Chris Prudhomme and I’m unable to get the roads closed! Luckily I bumped into Rob Leason at the Daffodils Sportive on Saturday (26 April). Rob is a fireman in Harrogate and has in-depth local knowledge of the area and he has also been able to provide me with an alternative B road TDF route that cuts out all the main roads.
If you have a look at the route ( here’s the link on RidewithGPS and here’s the associated cue sheet) I’m sure you will agree that it is far better and safer route, after all I think it’s really the Dales sections we are really interested in and I don’t want to get there via the A65 around Skipton. Rob has also kindly offered the use of his fire station as a meeting point where we can park up to 20 cars. The only other change is I’m going to set us off just a bit earlier. We’re going to meet at 8.30 for a 9 am start rolling out from the fire station, ride the course then finish outside of the Royal Hall where we can see where the final sprint will take place.
As always with these rides are self supporting so everyone must make sure they have enough spares, money and be familiar with the route. We will let the riders naturally split into ability groups once on the road. I’m still not sure how many people we are looking at taking part at moment, maybe 20 to 30.
Personally I’m going to ride this route at a regular pace and make several stops on route as I would prefer to take it all in rather than blasting around. Also the route is 123.9 miles so people need to think about their fitness and setting the right pace for themselves.
John Kelly is going to drive my car around as backup, there’s room for 4 bikes if necessary so if you would all be willing to throw in £1 towards my fuel costs that would be great, otherwise its free! The £25 you would normally spend entering a sportive you can spend in the café instead.
- Meet at Harrogate Fire Station at 8.30 am.
- Roll out about 9am.
- Ride route
- Finish outside the Royal Hall.
Don’t forget to enjoy the ride!
The Gabrielle Alderson Appeal
I am also going to use this ride as an opportunity to raise money for the Gabrielle Alderson Cancer fund. Gabriel is the granddaughter of club member Keith Alderson and she is currently battling with Neuroblastoma, an aggressive childhood cancer. If anyone would like to help raise money for Gabrielle please download a sponsor form. The money goes to the charity set up to help Gabrielle and her family directly. For further information contact me or look on Facebook for the Gabrielle Alderson’s Appeal.
Thanks, Dave Kirton