Southern Sportive’s season kicks off on Sunday April 1 with The Joker, offering a range of routes starting from Salisbury Racecourse.
The sportive, new for 2012, plays on the April Fool’s Day theme with a series of optional extra loops – or Jokers Challenges – on the course, built around what the event organisers call “the toughest hills, or other less obvious hurdles.”
Fools Choices, on the other hand, offer shortcuts to carve some mileage and climbing off of your ride. The catch? Tarmac may be in short supply on the shortcuts; bring your best pavé and cyclo-cross skills.
Riders sign up for either the short or long route, but the Jokers Challenges and Fools Choices means there are effectively four distances – 120km, 100km, 91km and 80km – on offer on the day, taking in the Wiltshire and Dorset countryside, described by RCUK as “beautiful” when we previewed the course earlier this month on a loop which included Shaftesbury’s infamous 25 per cent Gold Hill.
Each rider will enjoy mechanical assistance, two feed stations on the full route and one on the short ride, electronic timing and a free event t-shirt.
Entry costs either £26 or £24, depending on what course you opt for.