RIDE IT Sussex Sportive Cross 2019


After the success of last year we’re teaming up with Crawley Wheelers again on Sunday 10th February, this time to host alongside the LDN and SE Cyclo-Cross Team Championships. Join us for a mixed terrain CX sportive in the morning including a chance to test your skills with a starting lap on the Cyclo-Cross Team Championships course.

Our sportive cross course includes a mix of lanes, cycle tracks and bridleways so is suitable for MTB, cyclocross, adventure road bikes with tyres that can handle some off road riding. The route takes us away from Ardingly past Weir Wood Reservoir before we join the gravel tracks of the Forest Way into East Grinstead. For here we pick up some more gravel cycle tracks taking us along the Worth Way to the outskirts of Crawley before picking up a series of bridleways through Tilgate Forest and Oldhouse Warren. We continue on through Balcombe then it’s a picturesque skirt around the edge of Ardingly Reservoir before returning to the finish to collect your finishers medal.

Entry via the main  Evans Cycles website at RIDE IT Sussex Sportive Cross


By Car – From the M23 exit at Junction 10 and take A264 towards East Grinstead. At the second roundabout turn right and head towards Haywards Heath along B2028 where you’ll see the South of England Showground is signposted from this roundabout. Continue through the villages of Turners Hill and Selsfield Common and you’ll see the entrance to the South of England Showground on your right hand side just before you reach the village of Ardingly. The venue postcode for those using a sat nav is RH17 6TL.

By Train – The nearest rail stations are East Grinstead and Haywards Heath. Please check the Network Rail timetable facility for more information as services on Sunday maybe limited.

By Bike – There is no specific bike route to the event centre, you need to head for the main entrance on Selsfield Road/B2028.


If you’ve taken part in a RIDE IT event before then please read the timing information carefully as the timings are slightly different to our usual set up.

We’ll be on site from 07:30 and registration will be open from 08:00, please follow the signs for registration after you’ve arrived.

Riders will be started in groups between 08:30 and 09:30.

Please ensure you bring your helmet with you to registration, you will not be allowed to register without one so bringing it with you will save a trip back to your car or bike collect it.

Once you have registered and are ready to ride please head to the start area where you’ll be given a short safety briefing before setting off.


The ride is a single mixed terrain loop that starts and finishes from South of England Showground in Ardingly including the chance to ride a starting lap of the LDN and SE Cyclo-Cross Team Championships circuit before heading out onto the sportive route.

The sportive route distances quoted exclude the lap of the LDN and SE Cyclo-Cross Team Championships circuit which will add approximately 1-2 miles onto your total ride distance.

The approximate route stats and elevation profiles are –

RIDE IT Sussex CX Sportive Route – 32 miles/50km with 2,260 feet/689 metres elevation gain

Route Downloads – GPX / TCX / FIT / Strava / Printable PDF

LDN and SE Cyclo-Cross Team Championships Circuit

Whilst we think most of you will enjoy the challenge of riding the race circuit before heading out onto the sportive route this is an optional extra so there’s no pressure to complete the lap if you’d prefer not to. For those that joined us last year it’s less challenging than the National Trophy circuit with some fun sections that go inside some of the buildings.


For the duration of the ride you will be following orange signs (black arrow on an orange background), please pay particular attention to any caution or warning signs. 

You should see signs at every junction with the possible exception of dead ends/cul-de-sacs where they aren’t used on the route. If you reach a junction with no signs please check your map to see if you’ve missed a turning.

We also have a road sportive on the same day that will use pink arrows so please ensure you don’t follow the wrong ones unless you want to stick to the tarmac for the whole ride!


On the course there will be a single feed stop just after half distance and all food and drink at the feed stops is included in your entry. The feed stops are sponsored by High 5 Sports Nutrition and will have High 5 Energy Drink and High 5 Energy Gels or High 5 Energy Bars as well as selection of regular food such as cake, flapjack, jelly beans, bananas, peanuts, crisps, etc.

For advice on nutrition for before, during and after your ride click on the guide below from High 5 –

RIDE IT High 5 Nutrition Guide

In addition there will be catering providers on site who will be offering hot food and drinks for purchase after the ride and during the National Trophy CX racing.


Whilst there is no cut off point on the sportive route our course sweepers will be removing signs behind the last riders to ensure everyone gets back safely at the end of the ride. Please don’t deviate from the route once you start as you risk our course sweepers passing you.


There are no rankings or prizes on offer, all times will be displayed in a non-sortable format in rider number order. Please help us to continue running popular and friendly events by not riding in such a way as to obstruct the road or trails or to upset other users.

The majority of the ride is on the public roads and trails so please obey the Highway Code, stop at junctions where appropriate and obey any traffic lights. Do not ride at uncontrolled speeds around blind bends or on steep descents. Although we have event insurance it does not insure you for your actions so if you do hit a car or pedestrian you may be held responsible for any damages or injuries caused by your riding.

Please pay particular attention looking our for dog walkers on the cycle path sections of the Worth Way.


The ride takes place on public roads and we don’t have exclusive use of these for the event. Please be on the look out for other  road users particularly horse riders who may be using the lanes and bridleways in this area. Make them aware of your presence and pass wide and slow should you encounter any. The leaflet below from the BHS gives lots of useful advice for both cyclists and horse riders and we would recommend all riders have a read through before the ride. Click on the image to download a pdf version of the leaflet.

BHS Cyclist and Horse Rider Code of Conduct


No one likes to think about things going wrong but accidents can happen and we think it’s important that riders understand their own responsibilities. All our events have public liability insurance in place that covers Evans Cycles and the actions of it’s staff, it doesn’t cover you for your own actions or for actions of other third parties. In simple terms that means if you cause an accident that is found to be your fault you are personally responsible for any injury to yourself or others and for any damage to yours of other peoples property. Sorry if that all sounds a bit heavy, we want everyone to have a safe and enjoyable ride so please ride sensibly, control your speed and don’t take unnecessary risks.

We do recommend all riders have their own insurance arrangements in place to cover any such accidents. If you ride regularly and are concerned about your own insurance cover you’ll find British Cycling or CTC membership can offer you some protection or we offer our own specialist cycle related insurance services – http://www.evanscyclesinsurance.com/


We’ll be keeping an eye on the weather over the coming days and whilst some fine and dry conditions would be nice this time of year can be very changeable so check the forecast and come prepared for the conditions.

The course has a real mix of terrain, there’s mud, gravel, grass and tarmac sections, we’d strongly recommend a tyre with a decent amount of grip rather than a file tread and definitely no slicks!

Always keep alert and if riding in a group signal any hazards such as pot holes or obstructions to riders behind you.

We’ll be doing our final course set up on Saturday so will update if we find any specific areas of caution.


All riders will be given a hard copy of the route map at registration. Please keep this with you, even if you’re using a GPS, as it has useful information such as emergency contact numbers and the location of the ride splits and feed stations.

GPS Files can be found here – GPX / TCX / FIT

Strava fans can check out the routes and segments here – Strava Route

Everyone who has pre-entered will receive a pre-event mail on Thursday/Friday with links to the final GPS files. Whilst you’re welcome to download and view the provisional files we suggest you download the final version the day before the event just in case we have to make any last minute route diversions.

If you do not receive your pre event email please remember it will have been sent to the email address you used when booking the ride and do check it hasn’t been trapped in your junk emails folder. If you still don’t have it then email me on mark.gregory@evanscycles.com so I can check your entry and send you a copy.


Your rider times will be published on our website 24-48 hours after the ride, once available you’ll find them via the Rider Times link at www.evanscycles.com/ride-it

Finish line photographs will be published on our Facebook page after the ride, you’ll find them at www.facebook.com/rideitcyclingevents. You can tag, share or download the photo’s directly from the Facebook gallery.

If you’d like to share any of your own pictures you can do so by tagging us on on Instagram or Facebook


If you have any queries or questions relating to the ride that aren’t covered then please email rideit@evanscycles.com or get in contact with us via the facebook event page.

You can also keep up to date with the latest event information here and via the RIDE IT Sussex CX Facebook event page.

For any urgent last minute enquiries you can also contact the event manger via mark.gregory@evanscycles.com.


Paulo 9/02/2019

Hi – the weather looks pretty grim for Sunday and after all the rain in the last few days is the course still OK? Thanks.

    Mark Gregory 9/02/2019

    At the moment we’re still going ahead as planned, we’re just heading out to check the route now so will update this afternoon if anything changes.

Paulo 9/02/2019

Thanks. All good I assume?

    Mark Gregory 9/02/2019

    Yep all good, there’s some muddy bits but the course has held up pretty well. The first mile or so through the woods is one of the worst sections so don’t be put off as it’s not like that the whole way round!

Don 11/02/2019

Lots of muddy fun yesterday. When will my time be up on the rider time page?

    Mark Gregory 12/02/2019

    They should be on there now, you may need to refresh the page in your browser if it’s not displaying


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