On 4th July 2015, five intrepid Woodmancote Wheelers; Mick, Tim U, Cookie, Dan & Rach, embarked upon a raid of the Isle of Wight. We were riding in the Wiggle Wight Ferry Sportive, which combined two legs in the New Forest, two ferry crossings and a rolling route around the Island, totalling 90 challenging miles.
Our day started early with a drive to the start in the New Forest. The Wheelers all arrived at 6am in time to register, collect our rider numbers and get changed. Soon we were ready and heading towards the start line in our resplendent Wheelers kit.
We started in one of the first waves and we were soon carried away in the excitement as we covered the 10 miles to the ferry in a little over 30 minutes!
After a short wait and a sneaky trip to the Costa in the terminal for some much needed caffeine, our ferry departed for the Island! Despite the early start, the day was starting to feel warm and the Wheelers headed to the sun deck to make a start on our tan lines!
We departed the ferry at Yarmouth and started the ride east across the Island, taking in some great roads. The pace was high and we were soon heading up the spine of the Island to the high point of the ride. After a long descent to Bembridge, we arrived at the food stop for a welcome snack and to top-up water bottles.
The next part of the route took in amazing views across Sandown and Shanklin, before heading up some fearsome climbs en-route to Ventnor. Each climb was rewarded with sweeping descents and stunning scenery. We were soon at the next food stop where bottles were topped up once again before heading inland.
The final leg of the Island route saw the Wheelers setting a great pace along the Military Road, a 7 mile stretch leading to Freshwater Bay. Here we worked together in our own little peloton, tackling the last climb before boarding the ferry in Yarmouth.
The final leg from Lymington across the New Forest was a rapid 15 mile sprint which again, saw the Wheelers in close formation, securing Silver times for the men and Gold for Rach!
The Wiggle Wight Ferry Sportive was a great event and gave us a chance to explore the wonderful Isle of Wight. Highlights of the day included the amazing weather, dodging the stampeding horses in the Forest, awesome route, stunning scenery and great cycling representing our Club!
Who’s in for next year?