Chapeau to all of the 2,300 riders, 250 marshals, event organisers, supporters and crowds who took part in the Fred Whitton Challenge on Sunday. The event, run by Human Race, was once again an outstanding success as riders took on the gruelling 113 mile route around the Lake District national park.
Setting off from Grasmere early Sunday morning the riders knew they were in for a big day in what is widely renowned as one of Europe’s toughest sportives. Taking in all of the Lake District’s major passes, including the 25-30% ramps on Hardknott and Honister, plus many more uncategorised lumps along the way, the Fred Whitton is a bucket-list ride for all keen road cyclists. The event is run in memory of Fred Whitton, who was an integral part of the North West cycling community until his untimely death in 1998.
Baked in sun, the Lakes scenery provided a stunning backdrop to what is ultimately a very tough day on the bike. Volunteer marshals guided the riders around the course and provided food and drinks at the two feed stations on route. There were fantastic crowds along the way, shouting encouragement and cheering riders as they passed through villages and over climbs. As always, the 2018 Fred Whitton turned out to be an epic day for all those involved.
Photos courtesy of Steven Barber.