This weekend sees the 45th annual Three Peaks Cyclo-Cross Race in Yorkshire. Last year’s winner Rob Jebb will be defending his title – one he’s held for the last five races. Rob’s also the title holder for the sister Three Peaks fell race, so he’s obviously a man who knows his way up and down the hills on foot and on wheels. Ingleborough, left, first of the Three Peaks tackled by the cyclists
More than 400 riders are on the final start list for the 38-mile event, which sets off from Helwith Bridge, two miles south of Horton-in-Ribblesdale. Veterans, ladies and juniors hit the first section of metalled road at 9.30am on Sunday (24 September) with the big boys starting at 10am. First cyclists are expected on the summit of Ingleborough around 10.15, Whernside at 11.20 and Pen-y-ghent at 12.35pm.
It’s a gruelling, traditional cyclo-cross event – mountain bikes are banned – and only 34 miles of the course are reckoned to be ridable, so the competitors have to carry or push their machines for four miles-worth of the toughest bits.
The event is organised by Bradford Racing Cycling Club and ran over a shorter distance between its instigation in 1961 and 1979. Brenda Atkinson was the first winner of the women’s class in its inaugural year of 1979. The present course is more than 25% longer than the original one.