Hell of the Ashdown sportive gets even tougher for 2017

Extra climb and a few more kilometres for the early season event

Kidd's Hill is one of the major tests from the Hell of the Ashdown Forest
(Image credit: Chris Catchpole)

Taking place in mid-February with the constant threat of ice and even snow, the Hell of the Ashdown has a reputation for being one of the toughest events on the British sportive calendar. And for 2017, its organisers have made it just a little bit tougher.

Setting off from south London and taking in the Ashdown Forest in the High Weald AONB in Kent, the route has been lengthened by a few kilometres to 107km, and been supplemented with another climb.

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That means there are now no fewer than eleven different climbs on the route, totalling almost 1,900m of climbing including the fearsome Kidd's Hill (or "The Wall"), 800m of dead straight road with an average gradient of 12 per cent and a maximum gradient of 20 per cent.

The fully signposted and marshalled event will take place on Februar 19y, and with only 1,500 places available, organisers are recommending early registration through the event website.

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Registration costs £30, with a 10 per cent discount if you register as part of a group of six or more. The cycling event will also support two charities: Pepenbury, which supports people with learning and physical disabilities; and the Chartwell Cancer Trust, which provides financial support to the Chartwell Cancer and Leukaemia Unit in the Princess Royal University Hospital, Farnborough, Kent.

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Henry Robertshaw began his time at Cycling Weekly working with the tech team, writing reviews, buying guides and appearing in videos advising on how to dress for the seasons. He later moved over to the news team, where his work focused on the professional peloton as well as legislation and provision for cycling. He's since moved his career in a new direction, with a role at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.