St Ives cycling pair hit the continent

ST Ives Cycling Club riders Alan Moules and Roger Tyler had a taste of professional continental racing when they entered the 2011 Alpine Challenge.

Three days of riding over four stages, the race was more than 200 miles long and included 6,500 metres worth of climbs.

Starting in Annecy in France the route threaded its way to the Col du Leschaux for an 11.6 kilometre mountain time-trial which split the field into the smaller groups of the subsequent stages.

There was no rest for the St Ives pair the following day when there was another mountain race with Tyler played 30 seconds ahead of his club mate. In the full heat of the afternoon, the race was ridden through neutralized sections and a further 96 kilometre section with a 1,600 meter ascent on twisting mountain roads.

At the end of the day Tyler was lying in overall 23rd and had the edge over Moules, who was just one place behind.

Stage three was over 117 kilometres with two major climbs at Col des Aravis and Col de Bluffy. Moules attacked the stage early, keen to make some ground, and managed to finish three minutes ahead of the tiring Tyler.

The final day, Stage four, was the toughest day, taking in 115 kilometress and five cols the conditions were made harder as the thermometer crept up into the 30s. Both Moules and Tyler lost time to the professionals but were elated to cross the finish line at the top of the Col du Marais, Moules in 22nd and Tyler 24th.