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Sportive have become very popular, Cycling Weekly have put together a comprehensive list.


Dave Johnson's Audax experience.

I started off with a 200km event in December, from  Gt  Bromley near Colchester to Diss and back via Sudbury, it was a strong southerly, so fast soft pedalling with a tailwind out North for the first 100km, made me realise that the journey back would be was savage.

I've done two 100km events since then one along the beautiful but icy Severn valley , and more recently from the Huts at Henham run by Shaftesbury CC. 600k of events since the start of the out Peter.......that mileage trophy!!!!

Last Saturday was another 200km from Dunmow, St Mary's hall, very close to where we turn off to go to the Blue Egg as you are leaving Dunmow.
I've got to say this is the second worse day I have had out on a bike, with a strong southerly headwind all the way back from Snetterton race circuit .

In fact I was going to hacksaw my bike in half and sell everything I owned.

My calorie burn for the day was 6000 kcal, I couldn't even get enthusiastic about a fillet steak when I got back home.

But , a bath and the deepest of sleeps left me refreshed and thinking, well, I've entered an event in Kent today!!!! But I had a lay in instead!!!!

I've entered 3 other 200k events, leading up to a 400 then a 600 with a crazy idea of entering PBP this year, at this stage I'm not sure if that will work out, as it's difficult for me to get a ride in the week these days, and riding much beyond 200km is a little bit of uncharted territory, mind you I did a club run in the summer followed by the Dunwich Dynamo later in the evening......300k.....and felt who knows, only the legs will tell.

On the long events, the accepted approach as I understand, is to get 2/3rds distance done and then stay in a cheap Travelodge for 4 hours.

Although AUK, thoughtfully, have available an extensive range of free hotels that are not on Trip-advisor, are open all hours, but rather inconveniently have noisy buses stopping regularly outside and the occasional queue of people wanting to sit down on your bed.

For an event in excess of 200k at this time of year you need good lights and mudguards, and something comfortable to sit on ie. a good training bike, 25mm tyres ,good shorts and saddle, and a route card holder is a good idea, a Polaris maptrap is a good choice, but a piece of corex plastic some zip ties and elastic bands also works.

I'm learning more about route reading, long distance feeding, pace, comfort and recovery even after a few events and I've been along some sublime little routes in beautiful Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk, Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire......oh and Bristol, in the ice.

If anyone wants to join AUK then I have listed Glendene CC on the AUK website, ( I was very kindly contacted by the AUK secretary to ask if I wanted to do this ) so anyone can add that to their membership.

It's peanuts to join and the maximum I have paid to enter an event is £8, and all superbly organised with route card, brevet card and as much free rolls and soup as you can eat.

The website is a breeze to work through with PayPal for each event and a calendar of events you've entered and those you might like to.

The translation of Audax is 'brave, bold or daring' from Latin.......I wouldn't take anything away from that description.......I've found it a revelation and not for the faint hearted.