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Preview: Kilo To Go offers up a cycling legend in Shropshire

Preview: Kilo To Go offers up a cycling legend in Shropshire

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20 May sees the return of the Wiggle Wild Edric sportive, back for 2012 with a new spring date but a route which has its wheeltracks firmly grounded in legend.

The route traces the local legend of Lord Edric- "Wild Edric” was a Saxon Lord that owned much of Shropshire. He fought against William the Conqueror having allied with the Welsh Princes of Gwynedd and Powys. He is also mentioned in the Domesday Book. It is said that Wild Edric is not dead, but lives on, imprisoned around the West of Shropshire where he would spend days hunting around the Long Mynd, the Stiperstones and through the great Forest of Clun. All of which is in and around the Wiggle Wild Edric routes.

The roads in Shropshire are quiet – FULL STOP. Even the more major roads are quiet. The route makes use of mostly B roads, but in-places these B roads feel more like A roads in that they are wide, good tarmac but are very quiet. Initially, the routes start out on smaller country roads through fairly flat country side allowing riders to loosen up before reaching the first major climb, Long Mynd at the 14 mile mark. Following the descent in to Leebotwood, the route takes a fast route across to Westbury for the first feed station at the Village Hall.

From Westbury, riders head towards the second climb of the day - Long Mountain, a long and gradual climb. After the descent in to Forden, the roads provide for some fast easy cycling following Offa’s Dyke (the ancient welsh / English border). At Montgomery, the routes split with the shorter route heading back to Bishop’s Castle along a gently undulating route. The long route option takes the riders in to Wales, along wide quiet roads, through wooded areas and up over Kerry Hill before the long 12.5 mile descent to Knighton before tracking back to Bishop’s Castle.

Geoff Saxon (one of the two directors at Kilo To Go) says, “Shropshire provides cyclists with the opportunity to pit themselves against long gradual climbs amongst some very quiet and picturesque countryside. With Shrewsbury (Charles Darwin), Much Wenlock, Clun, Ludlow, and Church Stretton in the near vicinity, it also provides an excellent spot to bring the family.”

The Climbs

Long Mynd - For this year, the route tackles the Long Mynd climb from Ratlinghope and via Robin Hood’s Butt’s. This route is more akin to an Alpine climb with spectacular views from the top of Long Mynd across Shropshire and Wales.

Long Mountain - is a slow, long, and gradual climb from which riders can look back across to Long Mynd and out over Wales. There’s a steep descent from the top, and then fast cycling alongside Offa’s Dyke on a gradual downhill to Montgomery.

Kerry Hill – on the approach there is a very steep, short technical climb, after which the long, gradual climb up Kerry Hill starts. At the summit, there are some stunning views across Wales and back in to Shropshire before starting the 12.5 mile descent to Knighton. The first part of the descent is steep and fast, followed by a very safe, fast descent.

Routes

Two routes are available:

101 miles with 2,800m of climb. Key climbs include Long Mynd, Long Mountain, and Kerry Hill plus a 12 mile descent. The southern end of the route has now been modified to take in a gradual descent along the River Redlake to Bucknell.

60 miles with 1,500m of climb. Key climbs include Long Mynd, and Long Mountain.

To find out more and enter go to www.kilotogo.com