Thinking of the Santini GF Mont Ventoux? Warm-up with the Ventoux Challenge
The Santini GF Mont Ventoux amateur sportive is an event to savour. It features a summit finish on the ‘Beast of Provence’. The 135 km event takes you through the beautiful region of Provence where vineyards and scenic beauty cover the rolling landscape. After a few tough warm-up climbs you take on the great mountain, Mont Ventoux. It should never be underestimated.
If you have never ridden Mont Ventoux before this will be a test of your limits. It challenges you in every way a cyclist can be challenged. Consider:
- Physically: The gradients are demanding exceeding 10%+ in some places.
- Psychologically: Once you break the treeline at Chalet Reynard, Mont Ventoux has a way of making you feel small. It has its own weather system at the top of the mountain and what was a wonderful sunny day when you started the climb can be radically different as you get closer to the summit.
If this is not enough the last 6 kms are barren rock. If you’re having a bad day this can impact you negatively. If you’re having a good day this can be a motivator to finish the last 6 kms and relish your moment of triumph.The mountain itself is a foreboding presence towering over Provence and other cols in the region.
- Weather: Mont Ventoux is known for having harsh challenging winds as well as its own microclimate. Most tours operate in the summer months to avoid this. The mountain is normally closed in the winter.
- Pacing: It can be hard to get the pacing right on Mont Ventoux as riders have a natural tendency to start faster than they should. It is exciting to ride this legendary col and it is both an event and an achievement to complete the climb.
Preparing for the Santini GF Mont Ventoux
Given the uniqueness and the challenge of Mont Ventoux it is a good idea to ride it before the sportive. This will help you prepare for your big event and with the ‘Beast of Provence,’ this is invaluable. Riding with it SportActive will give you a feel for the great col and you will ride other routes that will feature in the sportive through the beautiful region of Provence.
- Once you have ridden Mont Ventoux you will know what to expect when you climb it in the sportive
- You will be able to pace yourself more effectively and you will have a better idea of nutritional and hydration requirements to finish the sportive. This will be far more difficult if you are going in ‘blind’.
- You will feel more confident when you ride the Santini GF Mont Ventoux and will be able to give a good, quite possibly your best performance to date.
- You will enjoy the sportive more as Mont Ventoux will not be such an unknown entity.
This is a high profile sportive on the amateur circuit. Especially as the new pro race is a few days later.
The Legend of Mont Ventoux
Mont Ventoux has been the scene of tragedy, controversy, and the best cycling moments in history. It is a mountain that even the pros respect given the unique nature of the challenges.
Tips for Riding the Santini GF Mont Ventoux
Consider utilising these tips to ride the sportive:
- When training put in distance rides until you build up considerable fitness. Then implement climbs into your training programmes. This worked wonders for the Legend Sean Kelly!
- Study the course so you know where the feed stations are and try to identify segments that are going to be particularly challenging in terms of gradients and weather.
- Ensure you know your nutritional requirements for the sportive. Use your training sessions to work out when you need to take food and drink.
- Always stay hydrated. This cannot be overstated.
- If you are not completely confident about the sportive try the shorter distance and the longer distance when you feel ready.
- Try and ride Mont Ventoux before the sportive. This will give you invaluable knowledge as to pacing. Best of all try and ride the tour with SportActive.
SportActive’s Mont Ventoux Tour
SportActive’s tour features two climbs of Mont Ventoux and additional rides through Provence. The rides are designed to challenge you and show this beautiful region of France. Our expert pro cycling coach Martin heads up a highly experienced team that will pass on coaching advice. This tour is invaluable at preparing for the sportive.
Source: Santini GF