Lighthouses Challenge Powered By Microgaming
Sunday 10th July 2016 sees the Isle of Man enlivened by the sixth edition of the Island's premier sportive, the Isle of Man Lighthouses Challenge powered by Microgaming.
This is a classic training ride from bygone years taking in the Island’s lighthouses (where possible!) and most of the Island’s coastline.
Both the long & medium routes are not for the faint hearted. In good weather you will be able to see Ireland, Scotland, England & Wales.
Over 360 participants entered in 2015 and the event continued to receive masses of very complimentary & encouraging feedback with some commenting that it was the "most enjoyable day ever" on their bike and that it was "fantastic value for money!"
SOME COMMENTS FROM 2015
“Hi Steve, just a quick note so say, once again, a big thank you to you and all your hardworking staff for providing a first class event again. We brought seven riders over this year from Horwood Cycling Club in North Bucks and all have asked me to relay their thanks. The route was once again stunning and the loop round to St Johns was a nice addition. Special mention to the ladies at Ramsey, they were brilliant.
Hopefully you will run it again in 2016? Graham”
“Just wanted to say thanks for a great day yesterday. Good fun and well organised. All the food was nice too.” Justine.
“Thank you for a fantastic event yesterday. Very well done”. Roger.
“I just wanted to say a big thank you to you and the rest of the helpers today, brilliant event and extremely well organised, it was my first time in this event and it was great fun, thank you again. “Austen
“Just wanted to pass on a big thank you to you and your team for putting on such an excellent event today. The marshals, signage, foodstops, instructions and everything else were brilliant and really created an excellent event. I did't break the 6hr barrier I was hoping for but that is down to me and a slightly unpleasant head wind on the final push up Conrhenny!
Thanks again for a great day and great event.” Chris
“Hi Steve. Just a quick email to thank you once again on putting on a great challenge today. The ride and views and weather were great !!!! Would you know If next years challenge will be around the same weekend ( second weekend in July )? I can plan other things around this”. Regards Phil
Many more good wishes were received via Twitter and Facebook.
The Isle of Man is a beautiful place to ride a bike, on or off road, and combined with fantastic ambassadors such as Mark Cavendish, Pete Kennaugh, Mark & Anna Christian and many more young riders aspiring to join the professional ranks the level of interest in Manx cycling has never been higher. The event is now an eagerly awaited permanent fixture on the isle of Mans sporting calendar.
The Lighthouses Challenge offers three course distances, 103, 57 & 37 miles.
Additionally the longer course can be ridden as part of a team. The teams will be allowed to changeover at a point of their choice as long as it’s at any one of the official checkpoints.
Your journey around the long course follows a clockwise route around the Island starting from the historic TT Grandstand in Douglas and takes in over 2,700 metres of climbing, including the Southern classic climbs to Cregneash and the Sloc. Participants can then recover over the west coast and northern plains before tackling the shorter but steeper climbs along the north east coast back into Douglas.
The long route has been offocially categorised as "hard" under the British Cycling grading system.
There are three well stocked feed stations en route to enjoy at your leisure located at Port Erin, Patrick and Ramsey with additional supplies at the finish.
All courses will have the same start and finish in Douglas and follow the main route south to the feed station at Port Erin.
For those tackling the short route you have the option to finish at the Port Erin feed station which is a great strategy for novices, alternatively you may choose to continue and tackle the main climb of the Sloc with the Long & Medium route riders.
The short route separates at the Round Table and heads south again down hill or pan flat all the way to the Railway Station at Port Erin for transport back to Douglas on the Victorian Steam Railway. What a unique way to end a great day out! The entry fee for the short route includes the fare for the train ride.
The Medium route continues to follow the main course to the second feed station at St Johns and returns to Douglas via Archallagan, Braddan and Abbeylands.
Both shorter routes should not be underestimated as each holds a challenge or two along the journey!
All entrants, individual and team, will receive an event ‘goody bag’.
Refreshments will be available at the feed stations along the route. The feed stations are becoming legendary and synonymous with this event! Some participants are rumoured to be returning just to visit the feed zones again!
Timing is all electronic using state of the art equipment which records your passage around ‘The Rock’.
All courses are supported by motorcycle ‘service course’ and ‘broom wagons’….just in case!
Free massage at finish HQ, where you can also change (although the facilities are not ‘private’ there are ‘quiet’ areas).
Our loyal sponsors Microgaming continue to heavily support Isle of Man sport and many of their staff are enthusiastic cyclists who take part in the Challenge, we’re delighted with their commitment and continued involvement with this event.
The promotion also supports local charities. The 2015 event benefitted the Isle of Man Childrens centre to the tune of £1100. Over the last three years the event has contributed over £5000 to local charities and the IOM Cycling Association.
The event will continue to support the Isle of Man Childrens Centre & IOM Cycling Association in 2016.
You can rest assured that you will receive a warm and friendly welcome on the Isle of Man and you can look forward to some great 'banter' on your journey around 'the rock'.
There are hundreds of photographs on Facebook at The Microgaming Lighthouses Challenge by SAS Events https://www.facebook.com/Microgaming-Isle-of-Man-Lighthouses-Challenge-by-SAS-Events-643396715757114/?ref=hl
Info for Riders;
Entry fee includes:
• Electronic Timing
• 4 Feed zones
• Goody bag
• Fully signposted route
• 3 'broom wagons'
• 3 Motorcycle 'service course'
• Victorian train return to Douglas SHORT ROUTE ONLY
View Britain as you have never seen it before, from the middle of the Irish Sea!
• Long Route £30
• Medium Route £25
• Short Route £32