Izzy’s mammoth Mont Ventoux achievement!
15 Sep 2017
Whilst on holiday in France Izzy and her father took on the mammoth challenge of climbing Mont Ventoux, one of the legendary Tour de France climbs. Known as the “Giant of Provence”, the mountain stands nearly 2000m above sea level. They rented bikes and set off in over 30oC heat. Izzy rode the first 2/3 of the mountain on day 1 which consisted of a 16.5km (10 mile) climb. The difficulty of this part of the climb is well documented with a 10km (6 mile) section through the forest that averages 10% gradient, with no respite. This is the section that brings all the attacks from the professional peloton as the weaker riders are not able to maintain the pace.
Izzy did amazingly well to reach Chalet Reynard, the ski station that marks the end of this section. The next day they returned to finish the job with a 6.5km (4 mile) climb to the summit. Gradients on this section average about 7% and the lunar type landscape of the mountain is revealed. During the ride the support she received from other cyclists, walkers, cars and motorbikes was amazing with many shouting encouragement at her. She finished with a flourish over the sharp 11% section that makes up the final 500m, comfortably sprinting to the line at the top, to great applause from the waiting crowds of tourists.
This is an amazing achievement for someone of her age, put into context by the man at the bike hire shop, who confirmed that they don’t recommend Mont Ventoux for children!
Total Distance: 21.5km
Total Ride time: 2h 40m
Total Altitude gained: 1639m