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Longer uphill time trials in the UK?

neebneeb Posts: 4,360
edited March 2017 in Amateur race
I've done a little bit of road racing in the past but to be honest, The older I get (50 in a couple of weeks time) the less comfortable I am with competitive cycling in a bunch and the associated risk of crashes and (potentially) serious injury. I'm particularly uncomfortable racing in the wet, and of course you can't predict the weather when you're planning to enter a race. Also being light (63kg) with a good 5min power and respectable FTP but a very poor sprint, I'm always going to be struggling to win or get good placing in a normal flattish or rolling road race.

It's clear from my ranking in popular Strava segments that my strengths lie in medium length and longer climbs. I'm not too bad on the sort of 2 or 3 minute climbs that are used for traditional hill climb events, but I'm quite a bit better over 10 minutes or longer. I'd absolutely love to compete in hilly time trials, but I just can't find any! Am I looking in the wrong places or do these just hardly exist in the UK? Although we don't have much in the way of Alpine length climbs here It's not as if we don't have plenty medium length hills of 10 mins or so, or at least routes of that length where most of it is uphill. There are hundreds of flat TT events organised all over the country, so why the seeming lack of uphill time trials??


  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    There are Hilly time trials around but not really of the distance you want. Maybe look for sportives where they may have a timed hill section? The cavendish sportive does.
  • marykamaryka Posts: 745
    There really aren't many people interested in them, for one. For two, uphill-only TTs mean start and finish are miles away from each other which is logistically tricky. And third, there just aren't that many long climbs in the UK that aren't on main roads full of traffic or aren't in the middle of nowhere. So the best you're going to do is some of the longer HCs like Long Hill, Porlock toll road, Great Dun Fell, I think there's one or two in Wales, etc. But by far the easier/more popular ones to organise and enter are the shorter ones.

    There are a number of "sporting" TTs in the UK with a decent amount of short and longer hills like the Buxton one. But to get a good result there you'll have to be happy descending as well as climbing, not to mention doing it on a TT bike. And the weather thing will rear its head as it does with RRing though at least you're not in a bunch.
  • andcpandcp Posts: 652
    maryka wrote:
    There are a number of "sporting" TTs in the UK with a decent amount of short and longer hills like the Buxton one.
    Linky -

    Well attended and quite a high level of competitors.
    "It must be true, it's on the internet" - Winston Churchill
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    There's also the Beacon/Jack Clements Little Mountain TT, which has previously been much discussed on here. Seems a fairly popular event.
  • neebneeb Posts: 4,360
    Thanks for the responses - yes, I suppose the non-there-and-back nature of an uphill tt makes the organisation more difficult. I'm in Southern Scotland and I can think of a few good routes here that aren't too remote, but as been said it seems that there aren't so many people interested - why is that? How much of it is just tradition? The Buxton thing looks fun, I wouldn't mind travelling for the odd event. How about on the continent, how easy would it be to enter an event there? Would be nice to combine with a holiday and would give a goal to training towards..
  • andcpandcp Posts: 652
    "It must be true, it's on the internet" - Winston Churchill
  • thegibdogthegibdog Posts: 2,106
    Most of the longer hills around here have hill climbs up them at least once a year (Cat & Fiddle, Holme Moss, Snake Pass, Long Hill, Cragg Vale, Blackstone Edge & further north Shap Fell & Great Dun Fell). There's also a couple of hilly TT series (Lakes & Lancs and North West SpoCo - the Buxton event is now part if the latter). I'm guessing there'll be something similar near you, not too sure about the TT scene in Scotland though. If not, you could always organise something!
  • Put Beeley in your diary for October 2017. 2.1 miles at 6%. That'll be about 10 minutes for you, less if the wind blows in the right direction.
  • neebneeb Posts: 4,360
    Thanks again, some really good tips! Seems that there are events around, but they are scattered and local. Probably would have been difficult to find out about them without posting here.. Keep them coming!
  • bobmcstuffbobmcstuff Posts: 9,037
    I did the Snakes Pass hill climb this year at the end of September - 5.3km and 330m climbing I think, which is about as long as you'll get in the UK apart from.a few unusual climbs (which may not have events on).

    There's a lot of hill climbs in September/October but most of them are <5mins unless you get big climbs like Snakes.

    They did the National hill climb on the Cat and Fiddle a while back and I guess there are some annual hill climbs on it - that climb is really long and has a descent in the middle (average gradient is only 3% or something)

    Stockport Clarion did their club HC on the Brickworks climb which is also fairly long.

    So there's a few around, check on CTT and on local club websites.
  • Kent valley road club runs an annual hill climb TT up Shap from Kendal. 12km and about 500m climbing. The current record is a rather astonishing 22:49.

    There are several that run up to 'the jungle', the site of an transport cafe each year as well. About half the distance
  • john1967john1967 Posts: 366
    you cant be to far from hartside fell(5 miles of pure uphill goodness) and greatdunn fell both of which have TT on them organised by border city wheelers I think. Also worth checking out is kent valleys loop of wild boar fell starting and finishing at sedburgh.
  • MoonbikerMoonbiker Posts: 1,706

    alot of hilly long TT's in snowdonia

    Fachwen one is 5.3 miles 6% gradient average.
  • ProssPross Posts: 24,271
    Imposter wrote:
    There's also the Beacon/Jack Clements Little Mountain TT, which has previously been much discussed on here. Seems a fairly popular event.

    It's a great race. I've still got an eye on targeting the best improved rider award as I set mine in the atrocious weather in 2012 (my profile pic is from that race). That said, the climbs are probably a bit shorter than the OP likes although I can stretch them to 10 minutes!

    Welsh Champs used to regularly be the full length of the Tumble or Rhigos but a long way for the OP to travel.
  • Not quite a Time Trial, but is this Sunday
  • BordersroadieBordersroadie Posts: 1,052
    In southern Scotland:

    This Sunday, the "Lang Whang" 30 mile hilly TT
    Sunday April 2nd: Gordon Arms 20 mile hilly TT

    Details on the BC website.

    Best to do a search on the CTT website, there are plenty of longer hilly TTs about, although I'm not sure where you're located?
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