Frequently Asked Questions
Who can enter?
Why not set yourself a personal challenge, cycle in memory of someone, have a day out with your colleagues or even enjoy some friendly competition against other local businesses. Absolutely anyone of all fitness levels can take part. Whether you’re new to cycling or a seasoned rider, the sense of achievement will be the same.
You must be 14 years and over to enter the Pilgrims Hospices Cycle Challenge and be accompanied by an adult if you are under 18 years old. 14-17 year olds must have a signed parental consent form.
How much is it to enter?
Entry is just £25 per person if you register before 13th March; after which, standard online entry is £30 (closes 23rd April). On the day entry will be available for £45.
Should I raise sponsorship?
Much of the entry fee goes towards running the event and making sure you have an enjoyable and safe experience. We’d love you to raise sponsorship for your challenge (after all, it’s no easy feat to cycle all that way) but its not essential. If you rather not ask your friends and family to sponsor you, we hope you might consider making a personal donation towards the care we provide. This can be done during the online registration process, or at any time on our website, at our hospices in Ashford, Canterbury or Margate, or on the day of the event.
It costs Pilgrims Hospices £14 million a year to provide our skilled and compassionate care to our community and events like these help us to continue caring for local people as they near end of life. Please download a sponsor form, set up your own online fundraising page at Just Giving, or call 01227 812621. Don’t forget to encourage your sponsors to tick the Gift Aid box if they’re eligible to do so. For every £1 donated, we’ll be able to claim an extra 25p from the Government at no cost to you or your sponsors. It makes a huge difference.
Where does the ride start from?
All ride distances will begin from our brand new start/finish HQ at the Sports Pavilion, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent CT2 7SR. Ample free parking is available across the campus as shown here. The event village will open at 7:30am for registration. Please do not arrive before this time.
What time does the ride start and finish?
THE CENTURY (100 miles) route will check in between 0730 – 0830hrs (no earlier please!)
THE CHALLENGE (75 miles) can check in between 0830 – 0930hrs
THE CLASSIC (45 miles) can check in between 0930 – 1030hrs
Departure times: You are free to start as soon as you have checked in. Times may be staggered on the day, depending on numbers, to avoid congestion on the roads.
On the day registrations: If you have not registered in advance for the ride, you will need to visit the ‘ON THE DAY’ registration marquee. On the day entry is priced at £45. Registration closes at 1030hrs.
On arrival: please give your name to the registration desk volunteer who will check you off and issue you with a ride identification number which you should fix to your bike with the cable ties provided. You must bring your helmet with you to the registration desk. No helmet, no ride.
Ride completion – all riders must have completed the ride and checked back in by 1700hrs. If you have registered in advance, you still need to check in with our registration team.
Are the roads closed?
No, we have chosen a Sunday because the roads should be a little quieter when you first set off. We use minor roads, wherever possible although there are a few busier sections. We advise all participants to observe the Highway Code at all times and take special care when navigating junctions.
How will I know the exact route?
The routes are listed below. You can easily change your mind on route choice on the day or even out on the road as there will be an opportunity at several course split points to curtail the longer route or increase a shorter one!
Will the course be clearly marked?
Yes, we will have bright orange way-markers all along each route and there will be a downloadable map for you to use in advance of the ride.
Is the course hilly?
East Kent has a fantastic variety of terrain and our rides aim to showcase this as much as possible. This inevitably means there’s a few uphill challenges for you to conquer along the way. But remember, this is not a race and it is perfectly acceptable to take your time and even walk up the hills!
What happens if I have a problem with my bike on the route or I do not think that I can finish the ride for health reasons?
There will be a Dr Bike available at each feed station except at Ringwould to help with any bike problems. Our advice is to make sure that you have your bike serviced before you take part in the event and to carry with you a small pump, inner tube and puncture repair kit.
If you have any health concerns please consult your GP before taking part. It is recommended that you are able to ride at least 75% of the course distance comfortably beforehand. If there is a medical emergency you should call 999. The emergency services are aware that the event is taking place.
Will there be refreshment stops on the routes?
There will be refreshments available on route at various feed stations at approximately 20 mile intervals. The classic route (46 miles) is serviced by feed stations 1 and 2. The Challenge route (77 miles) is serviced by feed stations 1, 2 and 4. The Century route (102 miles) is serviced by feed stations 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Feed Station 1 (at 19.5 miles on all routes): Ashford Hospice
Feed Station 2 (at 37 miles on all routes): Biketart, Breach
Feed station 3 (at 63 miles on Century route): St Margaret’s at Cliffe
Feed station 4 (at 60 miles on Challenge route or 87 miles on Century route): Preston
How can non-cyclists get involved?
We are looking for volunteers to help with registration and refreshments at each location – contact Deborah Kellond on 01227 812621 or Deborah.Kellond@pilgrimshospices.org for more information or complete & return the volunteer application form.
What do I get for my entry fee?
- Event centre facilities
- Mechanical support
- Medical support
- Full route marking
- Feed stations en-route
- Finisher’s medal
- Photos by SportivePhoto
- On site catering
How will I be identified as a Pilgrims participant on the day?
Everyone will be given a ride number which identified them as a participant. You must attach this number to your bike so that you are easily identifiable.
When do I have to send in my sponsorship money?
Please collect send your sponsorship into Pilgrims Hospices by 11th June 2017 to enable us to announce the grand total raised by the Cycle Challenge and thank you for all of your fundraising efforts.
You can either hand in your sponsorship at your nearest Pilgrims Hospice or send sponsorship to: Supporter Relations, Pilgrims Hospices, 56 London Road, Canterbury, Kent CT2 8JA.
What should I wear?
Suitable cycle clothing – please show your support and help us to promote our Cycle Challenge this year by purchasing your very own Pilgrims Hospices cycle shirt. You can order them online, over the phone on 01303 766206 or by email email@example.com or in person by calling into the shop at Frizbee Print & Embroidery, 53 The Old High Street, Folkestone CT20 1RN. Frizbee will be donating 20% of the sale price to Pilgrims Hospices. You can also purchase a branded ‘I’m supporting Pilgrims Hospices’ tee-shirt at a cost of £5 either in advance at any of our hospice receptions or at the start of each ride.