On Sunday 12th June, a large number of cyclists set off in groups and as individuals to enjoy their Sunday ride with a twist. We asked the team at Chevin Cycles, Harrogate to let us know how it went and Will provided us with the report below. Following the success of the inaugural ride, Chevin Cycles have organised another one on Sunday, August 14th. The challenge starts and finishes at Cold Bath Clubhouse on Kings Road where you can enjoy a complimentary drink and pizza after your ride. Why not give it a go and join others from Wheel Easy who are already signed up? If you would like to ride but are not sure about the navigation process, that’s okay too because you can simply join one of the other Wheel Easy riders who has plotted a route already.
To know more and sign up simply go to the Checkpoint Challenge page of the Chevin Cycles website where all will be revealed.
Will’s Ride Report
“Checkpoint Challenge is exactly what the title says. It’s a non-competitive event that we designed to be more flexible and more fun! Our entrants created their own routes, rode their own distances and rode whatever and with whoever they wanted.
Hosted out of the heart of central Harrogate, with our friends at Cold Bath Clubhouse (Located on King’s Road opposite the HIC), entrants arrived on the morning with their ride routes already prepared. In the up-and-coming weeks before the event, we e-mailed each of the entrants a list of our 14 checkpoints dotted around the area at local cycling hotspots.
Each rider would use these checkpoints to create a Sunday cycle that had a little more purpose to it. Examples of these checkpoints included: Greenhow Hill, Sophie’s Café in Hampthswaite, Trapping Hill near Lofthouse and the Boars Head in Ripley.
These gave riders a more specific choice on distance over a typical sportive and the ability to trim/extend their ride as the day went on. It also gave the opportunity to challenge our riders with a few climbs they maybe hadn’t tried before or a distance they hadn’t yet ridden before without the pressure of knowing they had a certain distance still to go.
Because of the format of the event, it meant any type of bike could do the ride, although many of the riders on the day were using road bikes or gravel and hybrid crossover bikes.
Some rode in groups, others rode individually. Some riders rode all 14 checkpoints reaching over 100 miles and others took the opportunity to get out in the sunshine with their friends to visit local cafés.
Using their smartphones and an orienteering app, riders would ride to their chosen checkpoints and scan a QR code at each location to log their visit and assign them with a set number of points appropriate to the distance from the start point.
After the ride and most importantly, we had the chance to socialise with each other, talking about bikes, products, the ride and anything else that came to mind in the moment! This was topped off with a complimentary handmade pizza (which smelt great and tasted even better) and a complimentary beer or soft drink in the upstairs area of the Cold Bath Clubhouse which, as you can see from the photo above, is a warm and inviting venue with live cycling, refreshments, safe storage for bikes and room to sit and relax before and after the ride.
The Riders’ Opinions
Insight on the day
Being the first time we had run an event like this we were somewhat in uncharted water. However, by using our experience from our annual Velofest sportive and our own imaginations we had been able to successfully trial the event to see how it would go.
We had a mix of riders all sharing feedback of the ride. We were delighted to hear that all of the riders loved that they got to do their usual weekend hobby, but with a bit of twist.
Here is an example of Glynn’s ride along with his usual cycling gang. The group of four rode approximately 35 miles stopping off at several of the checkpoints scanning them onto their app as they went.
We asked Glynn his opinion of the day after the ride and he said: “The event was great fun – a different way of doing a cycling event because we were able to pick what we did and how long we took. We had a really relaxed time, but still got a nice edge of competition as well!” – G. Robinson
This was exactly what we had hoped for. We wanted ‘Checkpoint Challenge’ to appeal to all riders and designed the ride so that you weren’t going much further out of your way than your usual Sunday ride. We were delighted to have all of the riders take part and thoroughly enjoyed the day.
Having been such a great success, we couldn’t help but launch round 2. Held at the same venue on Sunday 14th August we will have new checkpoints and new faces too.
If you are still wanting to know a little more please visit our website for more information and entry details and please don’t hesitate in reaching out to myself, or any of the other members of the team at Chevin Cycles.
We hope to see you there and hope you’re as excited as we are!”
Will Wilson – Sales Team, Harrogate