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Hell of the Ashdown 2016

Chastise1943Chastise1943 Posts: 40
Not quite the same beast without the ice - for once - this year. But the lack of decent signage certainly made it hell. Still trying to work out how I ended up on Hubbards Hill and then the centre of Sevenoaks towards the end and, to be frank, there were quite a few junctions where it just wasn't clear what the route actually was. Why no aerosol arrows at unmarshalled junctions and to confirm right route on the following road? This the second HOTA I've got lost on. Also, a lot of the route was muddy tracks and lanes which were, unsurprisingly, covered in winter muck, potholes and really poor quality. They were dangerous. Ok, it's a sportive in February. But I'd rather ride B roads than through brooks and mud with a real risk of crashing. 2 other points. What's the point of asking for an email confirmation print-out when you can still sign on without one. And why no final briefing on the start line today? The starter said nothing in the 5 minutes I was waiting there. He could have mentioned how dangerous descending Toys Hill would be in the wet, for starters.


  • Points taken.
    Starter was supposed to issue those warnings, all though they are also on the route sheet and two permanent warning signs [not ours] at the top of the hill, we also post extra marshals on the Toys Hill descent for that very reason.

    I can only apologise for the lack of arrows they were all in place on my first lap of the course ahead of the riders handing out Marshall equipment but we had several signs stolen during the event, also the reason we provide Garmin Downloads and a route sheet download.

    Some riders contacted me unable to receive registering emails so we made notes of their names and they had to report to the HQ Manager himself along with proof of an email from me giving them permission.

    As for the roads we can't make it to easy no one would want to ride it. Cheers
  • NWWNWW Posts: 7
    I thought it was a great route and really well organised. There are so many organised rides using the same climbs and the HOTA always seems to find something different. It was a great test of bike and bike handling especially that sharp right hander before the ford! Yes there were a few signs missing as there are on most rides but that's why we had the route card. Thanks for organising it - I know it's increasingly difficult.
  • cgfw201cgfw201 Posts: 674
    Thought the route was excellent.

    There were 2 T-Junctions where a 50/50 guess proved correct both times, with a left-turn down hill being the answer. Other than that, marshalls were excellent and signs did the job.

    I too found that off-road section really fun and something a bit different. Wasn't dangerous for either riders or their machines and made a nice change to usual Sportive routes.

    No info given by the starter seemed a bit unusual, expect some kind of brief on the type/colour of signs to look out for at least.
  • Resurrecting the 2016 thread...

    Nice weather today, lovely ride, albeit hard.

    The highlight of today was the moment I finished, parked up my bike and saw two of my club mates drooling over a bike.

    I was wondering what the fuss is all about and then I realised.... ... -web-1.jpg

    :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:

    I still feel inferior. Chapeau.
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