Results and Report of the 1st Velo29 Endeavour Sportive

Wednesday 20th July 2011

by Dan Smith

The first Endeavour Sportive riders departed Stockton Riverside at 8am with a rolling road closure and multi-vehicle escort just like the Tour De France. Groups of 25 were instructed on the order of the day before being set free onto the roads of Stockton-On-Tees and then into the North Yorkshire Moors.

After 15 miles the riders reached the first climb of the day, the steep 25% climb to Gribdale. With a hair-pin bend and Paris-Roubaix style road surface this was a real test of all the riders’ ability! Many took to walking on the second part of the climb, which is nothing to be ashamed of on such a hard hill!  The first feed was now not far away though, and after a short, fast descent on the now soaked roads, the village hall of Kildale was a very welcome shelter for food and water for all of the 300 plus riders.

Back at HQ, the professional’s were just departing. Riders from Raleigh, Endura, Sigma Sport and our own Velo29 set out at what looked to be a cracking pace. Hopefully, all of you enjoyed the opportunity to ride with some of the country’s best young riders, maybe even have a go at holding their wheel as they blasted past!

At just before 10:15, our first rider returned to HQ, well done Samuel Elliot on completing the 35mile route in only 1:59:14:35, you now hold the 35mile record!

By this time, Skinnergate Cycles  had departed on the “Service Par Course”, picking up any mechanical issues out on the 3 routes. On such a wet day, punctures were a plenty and the Skinnergate lads were kept very busy!

Riders were now flooding “pardon the pun” back to HQ, all tired, wet and cold but still smiling! When handing back the timing chips they all had a tale to tell, we’d love to hear any of your stories from the weekend so please do send them to contact@velo29.com; we’ll publish these over the next few weeks, with riders permission.

Out on the course, long route riders were starting to reach the 2nd feed at Cropton, which was a last chance to grab a rest before the hardest climb of the day; the 33% Rosedale Chimney! How many of you managed to ride this killer climb without dismounting? The Pros claim to have made it but we’ve not yet checked all the photos!!

By 5pm all but 3 riders were home, changed and dry. As we packed up the event kit into the vans, we reflected on what had been a brilliant first Endeavour Sportive. 6 months of hard work had gone into the preparation for the weekend and despite the weather, the day had been everything we hoped it would be.

There has been loads of positive feedback already, and this means a great deal to Velo29. We are cyclists just like you and love riding bikes. Many of the entrants in the Endeavour Sportive were first timers and new comers to the sport. We are delighted to have brought so many cyclists together on a wet weekend in July!

We’d like to say a massive thank you to all the riders who turned up and had a great time on the day; Velo29 really do appreciate the efforts you all made despite the horrendous weather. Stockton Borough Council played a big part in the weekend and their support was tremendous, as was the support of all our helpers who turn up at all the Velo29 Events. We could not do what we do without them and they make a huge contribution to Cycling in the North East.

The Endeavour Sportive will be back in 2012 and we hope to be bigger and better than this year, and of course have a ray of sunshine to replace the rain!

Keep an eye on www.velo29events.com for more news on the Stockton Cycling Festival, our other events and everything else Velo29.

Click here to see the full results.

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