Great write up by HWCC’s very own Spencer Hillier on HWCC’s first ever Sportive, teamed with the Samaritans charity!
What a turn out from HWCC riders!
Decent flapjack and a few hills, apparently!
Read the report below:
”The Samaritans Hellfire sportive took place on the 1st July, departing from West Wycombe. HWCC were well represented with perhaps 30 riders doing different routes and going off at various times. After the usual sportive faffing of affixing numbers and timing chips my group went off at around 0845. Cipo was resplendent in his hi-vis jacket and was clearly enjoying his role as MC, repeatedly emphasising how hard the ride was going to be. We all knew this to be the case of course; any ride that Cipo plans but is unable to ride always tends to be a “bit lumpy”. We weren’t disappointed – straight out of the start and we turned left up Bullocks Farm Lane.
In my group Jason and Pablo were typically pushing the pace; right up until the point when Jason got his first puncture. I wasn’t there to witness his second puncture but it was amusing to watch his assistant, Pablo, repair his first whilst Jason passed him all the various bits.
The HWCC group splintered a little but we picked up other riders and were working well together into headwinds around Chalgrove. The hills kept coming and there was a welcome food stop at the top of Brill. And what a food stop! Gels, Haribo, bananas, flapjacks, chocolate brownies. The best food I’ve ever encountered on a sportive. Off we went again, trying to conserve energy on the hills, knowing that Whiteleaf was coming up. There were quite a few expletives aimed at Cipo as we reached the bottom of Whiteleaf at around 72 miles. Other riders were obviously hurting too, as we passed a few walkers on what was definitely the hardest climb. It’s all downhill form here. Oh, no, perhaps not. Let’s throw in Bledlow Ridge as well for a giggle, and put a camera man there too J.
Then it was just a short downhill sprint to West Wycombe and the finish where the culinary delights continued with a welcome free burger and beer. Some people even had two burgers (and beers). No fine wines, unfortunately. 81 miles and over 5000 ft of climbing completed. My hardest ride this year so far.
A fabulous sportive run by incredibly enthusiastic and friendly volunteers. I hope it becomes a regular in the calendar”