Returning for its third year, The Sussex Downs Classic Sportive offers a pretty and scenic bike ride around the Sussex countryside. Enjoy the route as it takes you through the winding lanes and small country villages, with a few epic climbs and descents thrown in to test your legs. You won’t be disappointed!
In this late summer season sportive, we take you on a tour of the Sussex Downs, through a plethora of tree-covered lanes, undulating terrain and some wonderful scenery in the Ashdown Forest.
Starting out at Plumpton Racecourse we start by heading northeast on some easy-going country lanes before moving on to the more testing sections of the course, passing through the many well kept villages of the Sussex Downs. Shortly after crossing a series of old railway lines and the River Ouse, we reach our course split point for the day sending our short route riders west for a quicker day in the saddle and a more direct route to our final climb of the day up Ditchling Beacon.
Standard riders at this point will head up to our first notable challenge of the day, a long drawn out climb of around 2 miles, reaching 5% at its steepest. From here we remain in the High Weald AONB for the duration of the standard route and spend most of our day in the glorious Ashdown Forest.
After another series of shorter climbs, we reach the Chuck Hatch climb up the back of Kidds Hill. This climb lasts just short of 2 miles with a 9% gradient at its steepest section, averaging out at 4.5% over the duration. This climb is not to be underestimated. Once defeated, riders are treated to a fast descent down Kidds Hill but will soon be greeted by another unexpected climb immediately up Colemans Hatch Lane.
After this point, riders rejoin the short route and head south to tackle the focal climb of the day up the iconic Ditchling Beacon. Averaging out at 9% but reaching 16% in places, with several false flats and just under a mile of riding this is going to be a tough one. Once at the top you will have a rewarding descent back to the bottom, with only short rider remaining to the finish, for well earned medal!