Fred Whitton 2021

Hardknott took me 18 minutes 55sec at 245 watts and 67.1 kg (148 lbs)
I just tried to ride it as slow as possible so I didn’t have to put a foot down… it worked.

Gearing mid compact… Chainring 52/36 Cassette 11-32. At 67 kgs that was enough to ride every climb (most averaging 230 - 250 watts) FTP was about 280 - 285 I think.

I had almost the same power as you but at about 14kg heavier I was a bit slower :joy: 20:16 for me.

I was on a 50/34 and an 11-30, the biggest challenge for me was at the tightest corners being able to go round the outside on the shallower gradients as I was going so slow I’d have fallen over if I slowed down anymore. Luckily there was no traffic in my way so managed up without putting a foot down.

It’s a fun climb but at those types of gradients it’s just about surviving for most people, it’s unbelievable the Strava KOM is 9:15 :exploding_head: but then again Andrew Feather is the hill climb champion!

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It was pretty amazing, very lucky with the weather. Took all the descents steady and lots of stops for food as its hard with big gloves and not hot enough to drink all the carbs.

Short video that was put together by the support driver.


You’ll need to improve your descending - I did the C2C coming down Hardknott & Wrynose was the most difficult & terrifying part of the entire day.

Good lock.

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I didn’t realize the gradients referred to how off-camber the road is, rather than than angle of ascent. :grinning:


Seriously dont even think about trying to gain time on the decents.

Some of them once you pick up speed it is near impossible to knock it off. It doesnt matter about the brakes rim/disk (if dry) it is the traction, gravel and potholes, missing tarmac at the edge of the road, buckled road in places that is the problem. Having said that its prefectly safe if you dont try and push the limits.

Remember we aren’t Pro’s and our income doesnt depend on it. Not worth taking risks IMO.


I grew up in the Lakes though no longer live there. It’s worth remembering that the famous named climbs only make up around half the total ascent of the route. There’s a lot of other climbing particularly around the western edge though most know about Cold Fell these days.


Despite having spent a substantial chunk of my childhood growing up on the border between Lancashire, Cumbria and Yorkshire, I had never been to that part of the Lakes until I cycled through it doing the FW route, it really is lovely.

I started and finished near Threlkeld as I was camping there and the toys were nearly out of the pram on the final-ish climb from Ullswater towards Dockray, which really isn’t much of a climb at all when you consider what had come before!

Re: the descents are crazy and they year I did FW there were a couple of serious accidents, some people took it way too fast. I put my brakes on as soon as I was over the top for both of the last two climbs and even then it was scary for me. Make sure you have fresh pads for the day.

Other than that, it was the best sportive I’ve ever done. The only reason I probably won’t do it again as I don’t think I good have a good a day as I did again and why spoil it. Set off early as possible. A good group (I had a tandem to sit in with) on the A66 is very welcome.

Well that’s the event sadly postponed until 19th September.

Bit of a shame as this was my first time using plan builder. Not sure whether to try and peak in May anyway and do a different cycling challenge (like everesting) or change my plan builder. Might be interesting to see what PB throws up with 7 months build up to an event!

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If you’re local, could just ride the route on your own the same date?

I’ve taken advantage and pushed my place to 2022…should be no uncertainty then. Can relax this year now!:joy: