Location: World Horse Welfare, Snetterton, Norfolk
Event: 10 June 2012
Killer climbs, spectacular scenery, technical descents and exposed roads …these are claims that the organisers of the new Boudicca Sportive in Norfolk cannot make. So, what has this new event, organised and run by local clubs, got to offer to experienced and novice sportive riders? What will tempt riders into the sleepy backwater of East Anglia?
Well, for a start Norfolk isn’t as flat as some people would have you believe, the routes – 100, 70 and 30 mile options are available – all feature draggy climbs and some cheeky hills to get riders out of the saddle! In particular, the coastal section of the 100 mile route will banish any lingering perceptions that Norfolk is like a billiard table. From the top of our modest hills, riders will be treated to fine views of the Norfolk countryside and coastline.
One great benefit of a relatively benign landscape is that there are lots of roads and lanes criss-crossing the county, this means that finding traffic free routes is relatively easy. All three routes use quiet, rural B roads, lanes and byways - including one section of concrete road, the closest the organisers could get to cobbles! Main roads are crossed using bridges and there are just four crossings of A roads to be made, these are all within 30 or 40mph limits.
Norfolk scenery may not be spectacular but it is very easy on the eye. Riders on the longer routes will see a distinct change in the landscape as they ride through The Brecks, one of the driest areas in the UK, before moving onto the more rolling countryside just inland from the coast and then back through the heart of the county with its pretty villages and numerous duck ponds!
There is not as much variation on the 30 mile route but there are thatched cottages, flint churches, a monastery and a couple of old fashioned level crossings to enjoy!
This route is ideal for families and there are free places for riders who are 16 or under, providing they are accompanied by a paying adult.
The events will benefit two charities – East Anglian Air Ambulance and World Horse Welfare – as well as supporting local cycling clubs with plans to improve the number and quality of local events. All money raised by the event will go to these three beneficiaries.
The Boudicca Sportive – named after Queen Boudicca, the determined and fearsome leader of the Iceni Tribe – will offer a splendid days riding through some of Norfolk’s finest countryside. But don’t be fooled by Norfolk’s gentle reputation, anyone completing the 70 or 100 mile rides will know they’ve done some serious miles at the end of the day.
Full details can be found on the website.