Monday, 18 May 2009

KOTD times

Hi all.

Thanks to all of you for turning up and riding a testing course in some testing weather!

We've got to collate 4000 bits of information on to one spread sheet and then check for any errors. I hope to get the times up late today or tomorrow.

Right, off to survey the devastation at HQ



Chris Bennett said...

Nice ride chaps. I wanted a tough ride to test my legs and the weather certainly added to the load.

david said...

Just some quick feedback.

1. Registration etc. Seemed very easy and effiecient.

2. Feed Station, I only used the first one but it was a bit of a joke. No SIS drink as it was in the van which was elsewhere. The only food was then a choice of more energy products. I may not speak for everyone here but when I go riding on a sportive, it's nice to have a change from energy bars etc. available. Such as flapjacks and so on. No free food at the end, just the burger van wasn't great either to be honest.
Due to this I didn't really feel like I was getting value for money

3. Signs, very good, the arrows were very small and sometimes hard to read until you were right upon them but there weren't any missing I noticed.

4. Route, first half great, I was so cold after that I abandonded so can't comment on the second half unfortunately

Anonymous said...

Some more comments

The signs were a bit small and hard to see in places

Feed station number 1, where was it didn't even notice it

Rest fine, except the weather.

The Ride It! Team said...

Hi David

Thanks for the comments.

1. Thank you.

2. There seems to be a small understanding about a brief period where no SIS was available. The van had gone to pick up some more water yes, but only to the otherside of the cricket pitch, about 200mtrs away (you could have seen it from the drink station) Sorry that wasn't comunicated to you that well. With regard to food, we are sponsored and supported heavily by SIS so there was always going to be bars available. We went for bananas as they are a great, natural source of energy that most people like. Now there were 1000 bananas and 1000 energy bars at all three stations, that's 6000 bits of free food or enough for 6 per long Sportive rider. All sations were suplimented with Mars, Snickers and cans of coke (at 50p each, much cheaper than you'll find in shops) for those that wanted extra food. I do feel that this was enough, but appreciate that we're not going to please everyones tastebuds:-)

What sort of free food where you expecting at the finish?

3. Thanks, we do use small signs, but we put a lot out. This is because if we put out one big sign and it's removed then no-one will know where to go, our way means that there's less likelyhood of them all being taken down. Kinda safety in numbers.(Although we did have one of our metal "Caution Cyclists" signs stolen!!)

4. The rain stopped play for lots of peoplethat day. The main bulk of the riders got wet just as they were coming to the split, and the thought of carring on through what looked like rain for the rest of the day, caused a lot of people to turn right at the roundabout and not left!


The Ride It! Team said...

Hi Anonymous

Thanks for the comments

1. See point 3 above.

2. Drink station was between Pitch Hill and Combe Bottom at Albury Cricket Club.


david said...


Thanks for the response. Some sportives (not all by any stretch) manage to lay on some pasta and fruit and at the very least free tea or coffee.

There were no bananas at the first feed stop when I was there either :)

Overall good though would certainly do this again next year

Maloy said...

Hi Ride It! Team,

Thanks for a truly enjoyable and memorable ride. My feedback is as follows.

1. Where was feed station 3? Myself and 2 others riding with me didn't come across it. The other 2 feed stations were amazing and had everything you could ever need on a sportive - coke, energy bars, bananas, SIS, etc. All good!

2. In terms of the signage, it was great most of the time but seemed to get a little less and less prominent as it got closer to the end of the ride (I did the full ride), as if the arrows labels were running out from using too many to begin with. I must have missed the arrows near the end as I ended up having to call and find my way back to the finish, adding 6 extra miles to my already long ride. The same happened to 2 friends behind me. I think for future rides it's good to bear in mind that after 100 miles or so of hard riding, concentration levels aren't at their highest so I would advise using way more than necessary signs nearer the end of a ride so weary eyes don't miss them.

3. The map. I know it's difficult to zoom up on the entire 180km but the map seemed pretty pointless. I tried to use it when I got lost but I found it useless. On the flip side, the phone number got me onto someone at the finish who gave me the postcode and fortunately my phone has a GPS on so I followed it to the end.

On the whole, I really appreciate that you guys put these rides on. You couldn't do anything about the weather. All I can say is that the ride turned into an EPIC.

It would also be interesting to know how many people walked the last climb, Titsey Hill. For the record, I rode the whole way up! Stoked.

Oh and lastly, the riding cap is awesome! One of the best post-race gifts I've ever recieved.

Anonymous said...

I thought it was all spot on. Well organised, easy parking, good route signage, sufficient feed stations, cap and bottle. For £20 to ride in a 110 mile sportive around some of the best countryside in SE England, I don't think it is fair to complain about anything. Well done the Ride It! team

steve said...

Great ride, thanks. The best challenge I've had in the UK! Fantastic climbs and miles of traffic-light roads.

Can't do much about the weather, shame so many retired early.

Feed stations were good with choice (not just bananas like another famous sportive last year!!!)

Only one spot (right turn before York Hill) where there were no signs. Some of the others were a bit close to the junction but I did have the benefit of Garmin GPS which definitely helped.

A bit more post-event catering etc would have been good too.

Overall though, £20 for one of the best rides of the year, what date is next year?

SoloSzabi said...

Really good sportive ride! May be it sounds sick, but I loved the weather! :)
Course was excellent and everything was well organized!
When are times available?

Cheers guys!

The Ride It! Team said...

Thanks for the positive comments guys.

Maloy, in response to your comments.

2. a few riders missed the same turning as you towards the end. I went out to it myself and, although it have 3 arrows on it, these were on the right of the road so I could see how you missed them. I put another 2 on the left of the road and no-one else went wrong.

3. It's really hard to get 110miles of route onto 4 sides of A4! Making them bigger will mean loads of sheets that riders need to carry and then stitch together and locate themselves if they get lost. The maps are meant as a back-up anyway - something to show to a passing local perhaps:-) Finally there's a cost implication. The maps are printed on waterproof paper in case it rains! (or it's sunny and you sweat) 2 x A4 x 1000 = 4000 colour photocopies, let's just say that our printing costs for the 2 sheets were about £1000....

Anyway, glad the phone number helped you out and you enjoyed the day.


steve smith said...

Hello Dean

Congratulations to you and the Evans team on last week’s King of the Downs. It was my first proper sportive and I chose the full route for a real challenge. I can’t believe the negative comments posted on the blog, you guys must pull your hair out, I only hope it doesn’t put you off doing more. I found the organisation excellent and reckoned it was the best £20 I’d spent for a long time. When I got back I spent another fantastic £20 and had a massage (thanks Beth!) It seems people expect a three-course meal thrown in as well.
Once again many thanks for last week.

Steve Smith.

The Ride It! Team said...

Hi Steve.

Thanks for the nice comments. Good to hear you had a great time.

This was the first time we've run the event and was by far the biggest we've done. As such, it's a bit of a learning experience, so constructive feed back is always appreciated (Unlike the posts about massuses!). There are already ideas in place for next years event and how to improve a few things we felt didn't work too well.

Hope to see you there.