Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive

Continental Welsh Wild West Sportive

Aberystwyth, Ceredigion

Aberystwyth Bandstand, Marine Terrace, Aberystwyth, UK

Sun 28th May 2023

Starting at 08:00

3 races

£40.00

Organiser's Description

Whether you're an experienced cyclist looking to take on the challenging 'Cawr' or ‘Mynach’ rides, or perhaps fancy a more relaxing tour of Ceredigion on the 'Diafol', you'll be sure of one thing - one of the most spectacular rides in Great Britain!

As part of the week-long AberCycleFest, it’s time to get onto your bike and out into the countryside. We take you through well-known and lesser known beauty-spots, and, recognising that not everyone always wants huge mountains on their cycling routes, we have a range of 3 distances and difficulties to choose from - explore the challenging local terrain, where there's something for everyone.

Event start/finish is located at Aberystwyth Bandstand were each cyclists and volunteers receive a free hot meal. Each cyclist also receives a Continental gym bag, finishers medal and T-Shirt, whilst our volunteers look after everyone out on the road via our fantastic feedstops.

Races

  • Diafol 40 Miles

    £40.00

    Individual or Teams Under 3

  • Mynach 62 Miles

    £40.00

    Individual or Teams Under 3

    CLOSED
  • Cawr 106 Miles

    £40.00

    Individual or Teams Under 3

    CLOSED

Book

  • Diafol 40 Miles

    £40.00

    Individual or Teams Under 3

  • Mynach 62 Miles

    £40.00

    Individual or Teams Under 3

    CLOSED
  • Cawr 106 Miles

    £40.00

    Individual or Teams Under 3

    CLOSED

What's Included

Entry fee includes finishers T-Shirt, custom medal, food vouncher at event HQ, fantastic feed stops, Sweep vehicle, support motorcycle marshals, chip timing & a great weekend by the sea in the county of Ceredigion, Mid Wales.

  • Medal
  • Finisher T Shirt
  • Food stops and finisher meal
  • Supported by Continental Tyres

How to Get There

The event HQ is located at Aberystwyth Bandstand, Promenade, Aberystwyth, SY23 2BX

If travelling via public transport, Aberystwyth is on the national rail network via a link from Shewsbury or Machynlleth. Buses from North and South Wales are via the Trawscambria, or from England via the National Express network.

Parking

Car Parking
Ample parking is available in the various public car parks in the town centre. Please check the notices as the county council now tend to charge, even on Sundays.

The nearest car park to the Start/Finish is North Road Clinic – SY23 2EG.

Course Details

The Gawr

The Cawr (Giant) starts at Aberystwyth Bandstand before making its way to the foot of Penglais hill; this is the first and perhaps hardest of all the sportive climbs with a constant incline of nearly 7% for a mile! However, there are distractions to take away the pain as it passes the iconic National library of Wales and Aberystwyth University along with the imposing Pantycelyn building which was home to Prince Charles during his studies. As you reach the student footbridge spanning the road the end is in sight as the road levels off and takes you towards Clarach. Once the summit has been crested the road sweeps down through woods, care should be taken as halfway down the hill is a tight hairpin that can catch riders out.

The route then takes the riders along the coast on an undulating road to the top of Borth hill, which affords stunning views of Cardigan Bay with the sandy beach stretching to Ynys Las and on a clear day Cader Idris, Snowdonia and the Llyn peninsular visible in the distance. The road descends into Borth and gives the riders their first chance of some level pedalling. The route turns East as the road approaches the Ynyslas sand dunes and heads toward the village of Treddol and then Southward through Taliesin, birthplace of the famous Welsh Bard, to the village of Talybont. Spectators wishing to see the riders enroute could enjoy a roadside seat and pint outside the Black lion pub at the foot of the next major climb up to Nant y Moch reservoir.

The climb up to Nant y Moch is perhaps the closest thing Wales gets to an Alpine pass, including flower rich pastures with contented livestock and home to an abundance of Red Kites. This is a long but steady climb, 5 miles at a shade over 4.6% gaining 1253ft of altitude. The road takes the riders up into truly wild West Wales, the Cambrian Mountains. This is an area with open moorland hills, forests, lakes and streams abounding. Once the summit is reached the road winds its way along some lovely smooth tarmaced roads alongside Nant y Moch reservoir with the 2467ft Plynlimon mountain, the source of five rivers including the Wye and Severn, dominating to the East. Here in 1401 Owain Glyndwr united Wales and opposed King Henry the Fourth’s despotic oppression of the people. At this place, Owain and his followers, hopelessly outnumbered, engaged and defeated a formidable English army of over 10,000 men. Once across the impressive dam wall the riders ascend the short climb up towards Plynlimon, don’t worry it doesn’t continue to the top, before heading South along a fast smooth road towards the village of Ponterwyd. Care should be taken at the end of this road as it descends past Dinas Reservoir into Ponterwyd as the road has a couple of sharp corners before the riders cross onto the A44 road.

The route then takes the riders from Ponterwyd past Parsons Bridge to the historic village of Devils bridge. Upon entering the village the riders cross over one of the most iconic bridges in Wales, the World famous tourist attraction Devils Bridge. The bridge which spans the river Mynach, the name of this route, is now three bridges built one on top each other, with the original bridge built almost a thousand years ago. According to Welsh legend the bridge and village name derives from the fact that the original bridge was too difficult for humans to build and thus the Devil built it in return for the soul of the first person across it, hopefully you will not to have to make this pact to finish the route! Once across the bridge, the route climbs again! This time South East up toward another historic landmark, ‘The Arch’, which was built to celebrate the nearby Hafod estate.

From the Arch the road descends past the wooded and landscaped estate of Hafod, it was developed in the early 19th century and is considered one of the most important Picturesque Landscapes in Europe. The road climbs slightly here before descending along some steep sections toward the village of Pont Rhyd y Groes, where the riders cross the River Ystwyth before reaching the second feed stop and the splitting of the Mynach and Cawr routes.

From Pont Rhyd y Groes the route heads South, on a mostly flat to lumpy road, through the villages of Ysbyty Ystwyth and Fair Rhos to the village of Pontrhydfendigaid. Pontrhydfendigaid lies on the river Teifi and is home to the ancient ruins of the Cistercian Strata Florida Abbey, founded 1164. Riders should be aware that the surrounding area is home to the infamous ‘Beast of Bont’ said to be a panther or other large cat that was released into the wild in the 70’s with attacks on sheep reported through the 80’s and 90’s with the most recent attack reported in the national press just last year… So riders would be advised to pedal hard and not wear wool through this area! After running the gauntlet of the Beast of Bont riders continue South to the old drover town of Tregaron, home to the vast marshland of Cors Caron, or Tregaron bog, which is the most intact surviving example of a raised bog landscape in the United Kingdom! From here the road continues South West along the A485 to its most Southerly point, the town of Lampeter, home of the equiminical and theological University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. Riders won’t have time to pause for any theology or equiminical matters though as they head North on the A482 and B4337 across the river Aeron, through Talsarn and up the testing climb; 2.6 miles at 5.9% climbing 819ft, before reaching the village of Cross inn. From here the route heads East along the B4577 through the village of Bethania to the village of Tyncelyn. From here the route turns North again along the A485 and through the village of Bronnant and down through some fast sweeping bends into the village of Lledrod. A short 5% climb takes the riders to the top of the long fast descent into the village of Llanilar, care should be taken at the bottom as the riders turn right at the roundabout in the village. The route now heads South East along the B4575 before once again crossing the Ystwyth at Trawscoed Bridge.

The riders now head North West through the village of Abermagwr before turning East to tackle the routes final climb. The climb here is again steady, 3.2 miles at 4.9% climbing 848ft, with the road ramping up just past the Farmers Arms pub in Llanfihangel y Creuddyn. This climb takes the riders from the valley floor back up onto the open hills, a sharp left turn at the top taking the riders onto the A4120 road from Devils Bridge, turning right and a welcome 9 mile descent towards Aberystwyth.

This final section takes a right at the T junction at Southgate, 1 mile outside Aberystwyth. This is a steep descent and caution is needed. Please brake early! Take the first exit off the roundabout at Southgate (Penparcau) and descend through Penparcau into Aberystwyth over Trefechan Bridge. Turn immediately left after the bridge onto South Road and follow this to the promenade (T-Junction). Turn right here and follow the promenade road (New Promenade) to the Royal Pier junction. Turn left here and continue to follow the prom on Marine Terrace before approaching the finishing funnel at the new Bandstand.

Once under the inflatable Continental Tyres arch, park your bike for a well earned goody bag, plate of pasta or bowl of Cawl.

Shower and toilet facilities are also provided.

The Mynach

The Mynach starts at Aberystwyth Bandstand in the town centre, before making its way to the foot of Penglais hill, this is the first and perhaps hardest of all the sportive climbs with a constant incline of nearly 7% for a mile! However, there are distractions to take away the pain as it passes the iconic National library of Wales and Aberystwyth University along with the imposing Pantycelyn building which was home to Prince Charles during his studies. As you reach the student footbridge spanning the road the end is in sight as the road levels off and takes you towards Clarach. Once the summit has been crested the road sweeps down through woods, care should be taken as halfway down the hill is a tight hairpin that can catch riders out.

The route then takes the riders along the coast on an undulating road to the top of Borth hill, which affords stunning views of Cardigan Bay with the sandy beach stretching to Ynys Las and on a clear day Cader Idris, Snowdonia and the Llyn peninsular visible in the distance. The road descends into Borth and gives the riders their first chance of some level pedalling. The route turns East as the road approaches the Ynyslas sand dunes and heads toward the village of Treddol and then Southward through Taliesin, birthplace of the famous Welsh Bard, to the village of Talybont. Spectators wishing to see the riders enroute could enjoy a roadside seat and pint outside the Black lion pub at the foot of the next major climb up to Nant y Moch reservoir.

The climb up to Nant y Moch is perhaps the closest thing Wales gets to an Alpine pass, including flower rich pastures with contented livestock and home to an abundance of Red Kites. This is a long but steady climb, 5 miles at a shade over 4.6% gaining 1253ft of altitude. The road takes the riders up into truly wild West Wales, the Cambrian Mountains. This is an area with open moorland hills, forests, lakes and streams abounding. Once the summit is reached the road winds its way along some lovely smooth tarmaced roads alongside Nant y Moch reservoir with the 2467ft Plynlimon mountain, the source of five rivers including the Wye and Severn, dominating to the East. Here in 1401 Owain Glyndwr united Wales and opposed King Henry the Fourth’s despotic oppression of the people. At this place, Owain and his followers, hopelessly outnumbered, engaged and defeated a formidable English army of over 10,000 men. Once across the impressive dam wall the riders ascend the short climb up towards Plynlimon, don’t worry it doesn’t continue to the top, before heading South along a fast smooth road towards the village of Ponterwyd. Care should be taken at the end of this road as it descends past Dinas Reservoir into Ponterwyd as the road has a couple of sharp corners before the riders cross onto the A44 road.

The route then takes the riders from Ponterwyd past Parsons Bridge to the historic village of Devils bridge. Upon entering the village the riders cross over one of the most iconic bridges in Wales, the World famous tourist attraction Devils Bridge. The bridge which spans the river Mynach, the name of this route, is now three bridges built one on top each other, with the original bridge built almost a thousand years ago. According to Welsh legend the bridge and village name derives from the fact that the original bridge was too difficult for humans to build and thus the Devil built it in return for the soul of the first person across it, hopefully you will not to have to make this pact to finish the route! Once across the bridge, the route climbs again! This time South East up toward another historic landmark, ‘The Arch’, which was built to celebrate the nearby Hafod estate.

From the Arch the road descends past the wooded and landscaped estate of Hafod, it was developed in the early 19th century and is considered one of the most important Picturesque Landscapes in Europe. The road climbs slightly here before descending along some steep sections toward the village of Pont Rhyd y Groes, where the riders cross the River Ystwyth, from where Aberystwyth gains its name, before reaching the second feed stop and the splitting of the Mynach and Cawr routes.

From Pont Rhyd y Groes the route heads West alongside the river Ystwyth valley floor affording the riders only their second flat section! This section of road forms a rare flat part of Aberystwyth CC’s tough summer races; The Tour of the Mining valleys and the Angela Davies Memorial. The riders continue onto another bridge across the Ystwyth heading North West through the village of Abermagwr before turning East to tackle the routes final climb. The climb here is again steady, 3.2 miles at 4.9% climbing 848ft, with the road ramping up just past the Farmers Arms pub in Llanfihangel y Creuddyn. This climb takes the riders from the valley floor back up onto the open hills, a sharp left turn at the top taking the riders onto the A4120 road from Devils Bridge, turning right towards Aberystwyth and the welcome 9 mile downhill section to the finish. T

This final section takes a right at the T junction at Southgate, 1 mile outside Aberystwyth. This is a steep descent and caution is needed. Please brake early! Take the first exit off the roundabout at Southgate (Penparcau) and descend through Penparcau into Aberystwyth over Trefechan Bridge. Turn immediately left after the bridge onto South Road and follow this to the promenade (T-Junction). Turn right here and follow the promenade road (New Promenade) to the Royal Pier junction. Turn left here and continue to follow the prom on Marine Terrace before approaching the finishing funnel at the new Bandstand.

Once under the inflatable Continental Tyres arch, park your bike for a well earned goody bag, plate of pasta or bowl of Cawl.

Shower and toilet facilities are also provided.

The Diafol

By popular demand, we’ve added a third route to the Welsh Wild West sportive to suit riders who have ‘graduated; from riding the Corrach 28 mile route but who do not wish to push up to the 78 mile Mynach route.

The Diafol fits the bill with a challenging yet achievable 41 miles following the Mynach route as far as Ponterwyd on the A44, some 12 miles from Aberystwyth. This is where the Diafol turns away from the longer Mynach and Cawr routes and sweeps gently through the gradual A44 descent through the Rheidol Valley towards Capel Bangor and onto Aberystwyth.

Starting at Aberystwyth Bandstand before making its way to the foot of Penglais hill; this is the first and perhaps hardest of all the sportive climbs with a constant incline of nearly 7% for a mile! However, there are distractions to take away the pain as it passes the iconic National library of Wales and Aberystwyth University along with the imposing Pantycelyn building which was home to Prince Charles during his studies. As you reach the student footbridge spanning the road the end is in sight as the road levels off and takes you towards Clarach. Once the summit has been crested the road sweeps down through woods, care should be taken as halfway down the hill is a tight hairpin that can catch riders out.

The route then takes the riders along the coast on an undulating road to the top of Borth hill, which affords stunning views of Cardigan Bay with the sandy beach stretching to Ynys Las and on a clear day Cader Idris, Snowdonia and the Llyn peninsular visible in the distance. The road descends into Borth and gives the riders their first chance of some level pedalling. The route turns East as the road approaches the Ynyslas sand dunes and heads toward the village of Treddol and then Southward through Taliesin, birthplace of the famous Welsh Bard, to the village of Talybont. Spectators wishing to see the riders enroute could enjoy a roadside seat and pint outside the Black lion pub at the foot of the next major climb up to Nant y Moch reservoir.

The climb up to Nant y Moch is perhaps the closest thing Wales gets to an Alpine pass, including flower rich pastures with contented livestock and home to an abundance of Red Kites. This is a long but steady climb, 5 miles at a shade over 4.6% gaining 1253ft of altitude. The road takes the riders up into truly wild West Wales, the Cambrian Mountains. This is an area with open moorland hills, forests, lakes and streams abounding. Once the summit is reached the road winds its way along some lovely smooth tarmaced roads alongside Nant y Moch reservoir with the 2467ft Plynlimon mountain, the source of five rivers including the Wye and Severn, dominating to the East. Here in 1401 Owain Glyndwr united Wales and opposed King Henry the Fourth’s despotic oppression of the people. At this place, Owain and his followers, hopelessly outnumbered, engaged and defeated a formidable English army of over 10,000 men.

Once across the impressive dam wall the riders ascend the short climb up towards Plynlimon, don’t worry it doesn’t continue to the top, before heading South along a fast smooth road towards the village of Ponterwyd. Care should be taken at the end of this road as it descends past Dinas Reservoir into Ponterwyd as the road has a couple of sharp corners before the riders cross onto the A44 road, before turning left and heading to Devils Bridge on the A4120.

This is a change to the 2015 edition of the race and allows a more scenic return to Aberystwyth via the A4120.

The second feedzone will be at the Hafod Arms in Devils Bridge.

This final section takes a right at the T junction at Southgate, 1 mile outside Aberystwyth. This is a steep descent and caution is needed. Please brake early! Take the first exit off the roundabout at Southgate (Penparcau) and descend through Penparcau into Aberystwyth over Trefechan Bridge. Turn immediately left after the bridge onto South Road and follow this to the promenade (T-Junction). Turn right here and follow the promenade road (New Promenade) to the Royal Pier junction. Turn left here and continue to follow the prom on Marine Terrace before approaching the finishing funnel at the new Bandstand.

Shower and toilet facilities are also provided.

event hq

Event HQ
The event HQ is located at Aberystwyth Bandstand, Aberystwyth, SY23 2BX

The HQ will be open from 7am for rider chip & number collection and will stay open until the final rider arrives safely at the finish line.

On Arrival
Please turn up to the event HQ with enough time to collect your number, timing chip and make your final preparations.

Riders need to make sure that they have attached their rider number and timing chip as described in the instructions provided, and then make their way to the start line. Before you are set-off in your groups, a quick safety speech is given. The departing group sizes will be no more than 15 riders.

If you wish to start with your friends, please group together in the waiting area as the announcer brings each group forward.

feed stations

Feed stations will provide isotonic drinks from our nutrition partner Secret Training, water and Welsh food products that are appropriate to sportive riding. The food we provide is there to supplement your own feeding strategy. All routes have at least one feed station.

Feed Station 1 (for riders on all 3 routes)
14 miles – Talybont village square on the A487
Feed Station 2 (for riders on the Diafol route)
32 miles – Devils Bridge, Hafod Arms Hotel on the A4120
Feed Station 3 (for riders on the Mynach and Cawr routes)
33 miles – Hafod Arch – Natural Resources Wales Car Park. Listen out for the music at the top of the climb!
Feed Station 4 (for riders on the Cawr route)
65 miles -Daltons ATV Centre, Talsarn SA48 8QB.Cycle Mart will also be at this feed station with their mobile workshop to offer any mechanical support needed
Feed Station 5 (for riders on the Cawr & Mynach routes)
Cawr – 94 miles – Outside the Farmers public house, Llanfihangel y Cruedden..
Mynach – 50 miles – Outside the Farmers public house, Llanfihangel y Cruedden..

timings

Below is a table with the benchmark times for all three courses, with average speeds.

The times below are used as a guide only. You should always allow enough time for your own ability to complete the route.

Route Gold Av Mph Silver Av Mph Bronze Av Mph
Diafol 2hr 28m 17mph 3hr 00m 14mph >3hr 00m <14mph
Mynach 4hr 07m 17mph 5hr 00m 14mph >5hr 00m <14mph
Cawr 6hr 43m 17mph 8hr 08m 14mph >8hr 08m <14mph
Cut off times for the Cawr route
Due to the length and difficulty of the Cawr route, we will be operating a cut-off time in the village of Pontrhydygroes, which is the point on the route where the Cawr and Mynach routes split (37 miles). Any rider averaging less than 12 mph, means a cut off time of 11.30am after which, cyclists will be asked to follow the 65 mile Mynach route (also allowing for 25 minutes at the prior feed zones). We urge any rider who may feel that they will be close to this cut-off time, to start at 8am prompt. Our marshals, outriders and sweep vehicles will not cover riders out on the Cawr route after this cut-off time.

Support and Safety

Our official event sponsors – Continental Tyres – will provide technical assistance on the road during the sportive. Service motobikes will be riding the route all day to assist with punctures and other mechanical matters and hope to get you back on the road asap. Please pull over to the left hand side of the road if you have a breakdown and try to manouver to the nearest open space so that the service vehicle won’t need to block the highway.

What if I break down, or am unable to continue with the ride?
An emergency phone number will be located on the back of your riders number. Please ring this phone number if you are in difficulty, and we will send assistance to help you get going again. We will also be operating a broom wagon on the day. However, we will not be able to guarantee a quick pick up, so every effort should be made to ride.

the finish

When you arrive back at the finish on Aberystwyth Promenade (Bandstand), make sure you ride over the finish line (Inflatable Continental Arch), where you will be greeted by our team. Results will be given via SMS message shortly after you have finished and the full list of finishers will be on this website later in the evening. Do let our team know if you changed your mind and rode a different distance option to that which you originally entered.

Re-fuel – FOOD!

Refreshments are available to purchase at PD’s Diner opposite the Bandstand at a discounted rate.

And finally, Well Done on completing the Welsh Wild West!

Reviews

  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1

5.0

2 reviews

Huw

·3 years ago

Excellent event will come back to do again hopefully in better weather. Thanks again who ever handed my apple watch in from first feed station - diolch ichi - huw jones
TS
Tim

·3 years ago

The Sportive Of The Year....every year, it just keeps on giving.... As ever, this is the go-to Sportive in the calendar. Fantastic volunteers, stunning ride....tremendous weather.....

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Location

Aberystwyth, Ceredigion

28 May 2023

£40.00

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