FLAB SPORTIVE - The Big Fat Bike Ride - 8th May 2021
STILL the 'Friendliest Sportive Around' Our 2021 event is back with a vengeance plus some improvements and additions to ensure that you get the best experience you've ever had and that the Fat Lad cycling Sportive continues to be one of the best in the Sportive calendar. Get a great taste of Yorkshire cycling and Yorkshire hospitality at it's best!
Rated 2/5 for difficulty as some might not be used to Yorkshire hills, this beautiful undulating route weaves up the Wharfe Valley for a gentle half days ride.
There are some nips along the route (this is Yorkshire after all) but none last for long, lots of people get off and walk and the scenery is well worth it.
Taking “The Back Road", the route weaves along stone walled country roads, past the ruins of the 12th Century Bolton Abbey and out towards historic Barden Tower. A steep descent to the river, crossing via the ancient Bridge onto the east bank is followed by your first challenging climb. The road then rolls on to its half way point in pretty Burnsall village, home to Postman Pat, for a well deserved food stop
provided by the flabulous 'Wharfe View Cafe'.
Heading back on the west side of the river you're straight into your toughest climb, but from here, it’s mostly down hill and you’ll pick up the road back through Bolton Abbey, meeting up with riders from other routes for the final 10km home.
Rated 3/5 for difficulty, this is a stunning and challenging intermediate ride. Leaving Ilkley on “The Back Road", the route follows that of the 25 milers, before turning off just before Burnsall and heading through Grassington after which the ride takes on a different feel, snaking up the flat (Yorkshire flat), valley bottom on single track, low traffic roads, past Great Whernside and on to delightful Kettlewell and your first refreshment stop.
You'll continue a little further up the valley, before heading south, past the limestone cliffs of Kilnsley Cragg and back to Burnsall for a legendary Fat Lad lunch stop provided by the flabulous 'Wharfe View Cafe' at 60.5km. You’ll be ready for it and post lunch you'll take on your toughest climb out of Burnsall on the west side of the river.
It’s mostly down hill after that as you pick up the road back through Bolton Abbey, meeting up with riders from the other routes for the final 10km home.
Rated 4/5 for difficulty this is a challenging route with some tough climbing. Taking the “The Back Road” to Askwith, there’s a long steady ascent onto Askwith Moor which will warm your legs up for arguably the toughest part of the ride, the climb through West End and up Greenhow Hill.
Thereafter it’s a nice rolling downhill through the charming village of Hebden and into Grassington. You'll be through most of the climbing now and the ride takes on a different feel, snaking up the flat valley bottom on single track, very low traffic roads, past Great Whernside and to Kettlewell for your first refreshment stop.
Then you have half an hour or so to enjoy the breathtaking isolated valley of Littondale and the gentle climb up Silverdale between the towering hills of Pen-y-ghent and Fountains Fell, before the last real ascent of the day.
You’ll pass Malham tarn and (carefully) take the steep, winding descent off Malham Moor, past the dramatic limestone cliffs of Malham Cove and into Malham village.
After our legendary Fat Lad lunch stop it’s pretty much down hill all the way! Almost! You’ll undulate your way home, through rolling farmland and Yorkshire stone villages picking up ‘The Back Road’ from Bolton Abbey and riders from the other routes, to follow the River Wharfe to the finish where you’ll be 1600m of climbing and many lung fulls of the freshest Yorkshire air, better off.
Planned to give our most experienced riders, (already comfortable on our Fullock route), a new challenge.
The Epic is guaranteed to test, taking you deep into the stunning Dales and up some of Yorkshire's most iconic climbs. Setting off from Ilkley and heading through Bolton Abbey and up the valley, your first leg warmer skirts around Appletreewick, climbs to Hebden and flattens through Grassington and Kettlewell, where you'll stop for your first refreshments.
Thereafter you'll snake up the breathtaking (literally) Park Rash with it's 25% inclines and hairpin bends and on through Coverdale. Stop for a quick refresh in Swinithwaite before your next big climb up Kidstones. Then it's all down hill back to Kettlewell and lunch.
You're onwards towards Kilnsey, before picking up the route to Malham and your final challenge of the day.
Riders will need experience of long distances and Yorkshire (style) territory to get the most from this day. Ride Marshalls will be around to mentor and coach but for your own safety and enjoyment, riders will have to make our checkpoints by certain times to continue on the ride.
Riders registered on this ride can swap to the shorter routes before or on the day via our sign up pages.