How to get involved

Key Information

Date
4th September 2016

Start Venue
Manchester Velodrome
National Cycling Centre
Stuart Street
Manchester
M11 4DQ

  • Venue open: 05:00
  • Registration: 05:00-06:00
  • Riders set off: 06:00-07:00

Finish Venue
Lee Valley Velopark
Olympic Park
London
E20 3EL

  • Venue open: 15:00-00:00
    First riders expected from 17:00 (+/-)

Pre-ride Pasta Party

The day before the ride, Saturday 3rd September, join us at the Rapha Cycle Club Manchester for a pasta party and the opportunity to meet your fellow riders, teammates and rivals. Fuel up for the next day and pick up your rider pack.

Time: Saturday 3rd September, 18:00-20:00. Speeches at 19:00.

Address: Rapha Cycle Club, 5 St Ann’s Alley, Manchester M2 7LP

Registration & Rider Pack

Registration: Saturday 3rd September, 15:00-18:00 at the Rapha Cycle Club and from 05:00 Sunday 4th September at the Manchester Velodrome.

The rider pack is a limited edition M2L musette containing your M2L north or south cap, your rider number, luggage tags and brevet card. Registration will be open from 15:00-18:00 at the Rapha Cycle Club on Saturday, please bring your helmet so your timing chip can be attached. If you are unable to collect your rider pack at registration on Saturday you can pick it up on the morning of the ride at the Manchester Velodrome.

Morning Registration

On the morning of the ride on Sunday the registration area will be located inside the entrance to Manchester Velodrome. Registration will open at 05:00 and closes at 06:30. Riders will be set off from 06:00 in groups. 

Feed Stops
With four feed stops at 43-59-mile intervals there will be plenty of opportunities to stock up on sustenance, including energy products from Science in Sport. However you should carry enough food/energy products with you to supplement this and to last the duration of the ride.

  • Feed station 1 – Carsington Water, DE6 1ST (45 miles in)
  • Feed Station 2 – Bosworth Hall Hotel (88 miles in)
  • Feed station 3 – Castle Ashby, NN7 1LQ (147 miles in)
  • Feed station 4 – Woolmer Green Village Hall (187 miles in)

Feed Station 3: Light Check
At Feed Station 3 each rider must leave with appropriately bright lights and at least one reflective item ready for when darkness falls. Riding on unlit country roads means that powerful lights are a must in order to see the road, and reflective clothing helps keep riders visible to drivers in dark conditions. We recommend a Brevet Gilet or Hi-Viz Gilet. Brand new Lezyne lights will be on sale at Feed Station 3 for those who require stronger lights.

FAQ

Getting to the ride

What do I need to take with me for the ride?
The ride is fully supported with sweet and savoury food supplied by the More? Artisan Bakery and ride nutrition supplied by Science in Sport, however if you have a preferred energy brand or any particular food that you enjoy whilst riding long distances, please bring enough with you. It’s also advisable to bring a small tool kit and spares, sufficient to fix a puncture and broken chain.

Bikes
Helmets and a road bike with drop handlebars is mandatory. TT bars or fixed gear bicycles are not allowed.

Will the Rapha Cycle Club Manchester be selling ride bars and other food prior to the ride?
We are hosting a pre-ride pasta party at our Manchester Cycle Club for all participants the night before the ride where riders can fuel up. There will also be plenty of ride food and energy products available at the start and on the route at the four feed stops free of charge.

Will there be any transport to the velodrome on the morning of the ride?
There will be no transport to the velodrome due to the scattered nature of riders’ locations and the fortunate nature of the velodrome being in a central location.

Are there any hotels you recommend in Manchester?
Manchester has many accommodation options. Some of the big hotels near the start are listed below.

  • Premier Inn Manchester Piccadilly (2 miles from start)
  • Travelodge Manchester Ancoats (2 miles from start)
  • Ibis Manchester (3 miles from start)
  • Holiday Inn Manchester Central Park (2 miles from start)

Can I leave a bag with the organisers at the start?
Yes. Your bag will be left with the registration staff and transported straight to the finish line. You will also have the option of filling a wet bag (the musette your rider pack comes in) with dry kit and spare supplies that will be taken to Feed Station 3 for you to collect if necessary.

The Ride

What if I have a mechanical issue between two feed stops and the light is fading?
There will be mobile mechanics and medical support vehicles on route. Should you need these please contact event control on the appropriate numbers, which will be distributed to all riders at the start and be printed on your waterproof maps. It is worth adding these numbers onto your mobile phone.

Emergency Medical Assistance – 07624 302 627
Emergency Assistance HQ (Landline) – 01768 778 848
Routine Requests, Mechanical, Lost Rider – 07624 302 632

What happens if I am unable to finish?
The organisers will do their utmost to help all riders finish. We will advise on time checks at each feed stop and if we feel that you need to be ‘bumped’ up the course, we will discuss that with you. You may want to ride past a certain point on the course so can choose where you are bumped up, however, in all circumstances any riders falling short of the time checks will be driven further up the course towards London.

What type of food will there be at the feed stops?
Each feed stop will feature food from the More? Artisan Bakery with a bias towards sustenance, plus Science in Sport have generously donated energy gels and electrolyte powder for riders which will be available at the start and at each feed stop. There will be water to top up bidons, and do remember that if you have a preferred energy brand that is not Science in Sport that you know agrees with you, please bring enough to top-up what the feed stops will offer. Try not to eat too much sugar too soon, as many riders find that long rides are better fuelled by real food.

What time does the ride start?
The registration area will open at 05:00 and the first riders will set off at 06:00, in groups of 25 every two minutes. All riders will be on the road by 07:00.

Can I ride around the velodrome in Stratford?
We have access to the road track and the ride will finish on it. The indoor velodrome track unfortunately will not be open.

What spares do I need to carry?

  • Inner tube x2 (if you ride on tubs, carry a spare tub and some sealant)
  • Tyre levers
  • Patches
  • Multitool (with chain breaker)
  • Split link
  • Pump and/or CO2
  • Tyre boot
  • Latex gloves (optional, handy for staying clean during repairs)

Most importantly, know how to use all of the above. Whilst we have support vehicles out on the course, it will be much quicker if you can fix things yourself. Make sure your bike is in good working order. Now is the time to have it serviced if required.

Getting home from the ride

Can I shower after the ride?
Yes. There are facilities at the VeloPark, however you must supply your own towel and toiletries. Your bag will be waiting for you at the end.

Is there secure bike parking?
Yes. There is a designated area at the VeloPark, and this will be marshalled.

What happens when I finish the ride at the VeloPark?
There will be hot food, a large bottle of beer (or three) and a chance to analyse the North v. South leaderboard.

Will there be transport home from the VeloPark?
The phone numbers of local taxi firms in Stratford for those staying in London to book their own cabs to their accommodation are listed below, and the coach back to Manchester which can be booked during sign up will leave at 00:30 sharp.

What about trains etc?
Being a Sunday availability is very dependent on what time you finish due to trains finishing a little earlier. Once the train timetable is known we will share this information with the most popular routes.

Are there any hotels you can recommend near the VeloPark?
Yes, thanks to the 2012 Olympics, there are lots of options in and around Stratford:

  • Premier Inn Stratford (less than 1 mile from VeloPark)
  • Holiday Inn Stratford City (1 mile from VeloPark)
  • Travelodge Stratford (1.5 miles from VeloPark
  • The Railway Tavern (1 mile from VeloPark)

Travel

Arranging your travel plans in advance will help you have a stress free experience on the day and let you focus on your ride. The information below will help you plan how to get to the start of the ride and more importantly back from the finish.

Start
The ride will start at 05:00 from the National Cycling Centre – Manchester Velodrome, registration will open at 05:00. Parking will be available close to the National Cycling Centre in the allocated Ethiad Car Park G if you wish to leave your car there until you return on Sunday night/Monday morning, there is no cost for parking in the allocated area.

The National Cycling Centre
Stuart Street
Manchester
M11 4DQ
Details on how to get there »

Registration
You can register for the ride and receive your rider pack from 15:00-18:00 on Saturday 3rd September at the Rapha Cycle Club Manchester. Registering on Saturday will mean you can sign on quicker on Sunday morning and is strongly advised.

Hotels
There are a number of hotels near the velodrome as listed on the National Cycle Centre website.

Finish
The ride will finish at the Lee Valley Velo Park within the Queen Elizabeth Olympic park. It will be dark and you will be tired so make sure you know how you are getting home.

Lee Valley VeloPark
Abercrombie Road
Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
London
E20 3AB
Details on how to get there »

Coach
A coach with limited places is available for riders travelling back from Manchester to London, with combined bike transport. The coach will leave the finish point at 00:30 and drop back to the Manchester Velodrome. A coach ticket costs £50 and can be booked when signing up, these are sold on a first come first served basis.

Friends and Family
There is lots of free parking available at the London velodrome and we would encourage friends and family to join us on the finish line to cheer you in and help you home! There is also indoor space and access to toilets.

Taxi
It is possible to secure taxi’s from the velodrome but please be aware you may have to wait some time for the taxi. Also the cost of a taxi with a bike on a Sunday night late at night will be high so be prepared.

If you wish to depart from Stratford or Stratford International using a taxi then Westfield Stratford City have the Stratford City Cars Taxi Lounge located outside Waitrose on the lower ground Floor (near car park A).

Black taxis are available from outside Stratford stations’ northern ticket hall which is located on the lower ground floor of Westfield Stratford City near Starbucks.

Alternatively, you can call these licensed cab numbers and make sure you let them know in advance that you have a bike.

  • Stratford City Cars – 020 8555 5555
  • Radio-Taxis – 020 7272 0272
  • Com Cab – 020 7908 0207
  • Dial-a-cab – 020 7253 5000
  • Call-A-cab – 020 8901 4444
  • London Black Taxis – 07779 336 612

Hotels
The closest hotels to the Velo Park are situated within the Westfield Shopping centre:

Supporter information

Can riders have a support car, driven by a friend or my partner?
To avoid congestion and danger to riders and other road users we ask that riders do not bring support cars. However, we are keen to encourage support at the start and finish and at Castle Ashby (near Northampton) where there is plenty of parking for all.

Which feed stops are suitable for friends and family to wait at for riders?

  • Feed station 1 – Carsington Water, DE6 1ST (45 miles in)
    Covered picnic area, close to the main Visitor Centre. 
There’s a large car park suitable for family/friends to meet. The first riders are expected from 09:00.
  • Feed station 2 – Bosworth Hall Hotel (88 miles in)
    Not recommended for family/friends as parking and access is limited.
  • Feed station 3 – Castle Ashby, NN7 1LQ (147 miles in)
    Walled Garden Café and Grounds. 
Ample parking and activities for family. First riders expected from 15:00
  • Feed station 4 – Woolmer Green Village Hall (187 miles in)
    Not recommended for family/friends as parking and access is limited.

Supporting at the finish
If you wish to wait at the finish at Lee Valley Velopark, supporters can wait at the venue from 17:00 onwards. Parking is free and there will be signs from the main entrance directing friends and family to the finishing line and rider recovery area.

Parking near Manchester Velodrome
It will not be possible to leave vehicles in the velodrome car park or park directly outside the velodrome. There will be a designated parking area for participants at the Ethiad Car Park G nearby which will be clearly signed on arrival into the area.

Parking at Lee Valley Velopark
You can park in the Lee Valley Velopark car park free of charge.

Question still not answered?
For any other queries please email: m2l@rapha.cc

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