FEB 26 2017: Canterbury
2017 gives us a unique opportunity to use a new course while this part of SH1 has minimal traffic due to earthquake effected roads.
The Kings Electrical Classic, Round One of the Calder Stewart Cycling Series starts and finishes in Cheviot. The 27km loop takes us out to the popular holiday surf beach of Gore Bay. This course could see a “fortune favors the brave” winner who can really commit to a long break and suffer knowing that the peloton will reduce each lap.
The race leaves Cheviot via Gore Bay Road, which gives 8km of gently rolling and winding roads before we get into the holiday batch area of Gore Bay. There are four single lane bridges through this first section of Gore Bay Road which riders must be aware of.
Gore Bay has a couple of tight, narrow corners as we follow the coast for about 2km. We then hit “the wall” to climb out of Gore Bay. This is a 1km climb where you won’t see much below 15% gradient for the first 500m, which makes the second half, at about 6% gradient, seem like a relief. This is sure to be the spot where the early break will force its way off the front and sprinters will have to big deep to stay in the bunch each lap.
Riders must take extra CAUTION on the first short rolling descent, which leads into a tightening left hand bend. This corner is sharper than it looks and is slightly off camber.
The next 2km of rolling road gives little recovery when you hit the second, more gradual climb, which is 1km long at 6-8% gradient. This climb could be the telling point on the final lap, as it can punish already tired legs.
There is another 1.5km of rolling roads before the 2km descent down Cathedral Road and turn right onto Hurunui Mouth Road.
The next 4km to Domett is relatively flat. A right hand turn at Domett , onto SH1 puts us at the foot of the last opportunity for the climbers to hurt any sprinters left in the group on the final lap. This pinch is 800m long at 5-7% gradient.
The last section is a 5km slightly down hill run into the main street of Cheviot.
The right hand turn back onto Gore Bay Road completes the lap. The final lapfinish line will be just before this right turn.
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