The Tour de France, the Vuelta, the Giro, Paris-Roubaix, Liege-Bastone-Liege, Tour of Flanders. All truly inspiring rides with long and loyal followings.
None, however, have managed to achieve the legendary status of the three rides which comprise the Las Vegas Institute of Sport Audax; rides which eschew the strange obsession of people handing you food as you slow down to 20kph, rides for which success is measured by whether you got pavlova at Hill before it ran out or by how many bowls of soup you consumed at Doynton, rides which alternate between frostbite & sunburn depending on which year you ride.
The 8th edition of this modern Classic will be taking place on 2nd April 2017, a day truly burdened with history. On that day in 1912 the Titanic began its sea trials (1912), in 1982 Argentina invaded the Falklands and in 1960 a young boy named Linford Christie was born, heralding a golden age of food container related puns.
As is traditional, entries open on the 1st January - the birthday of the Institute's late lamented founder, Mr Barry Jaegar.
Following their imminent arrival back in the UK from what is possibly the most convoluted round trip to pop out for a pint of milk, it is rumoured that this edition may see the return of LVIS's intrepid audax meisters, Kirsty & Marcus McGumford.
Check out the blog of their travels here: shesnotpedallingontheback.com (warning: content may contain disturbing images of unkempt beards).
The 8th Edition of the LVIS audax: for a limited time with added McGumford.
Due to limitations on space at the village hall and at some of the controls, we will be accepting a maximum of 200 riders on the Ball Buster route, 250 riders on the Bash route and 200 riders on the Blast route. We cannot accept any entries on the day.
Dave Atkinson of road.cc wrote an article about the 2013 event: 190km of Rule Five. And 22km of our own rules.
There's also an article about the 2010 event on road.cc: My first 200km: Barry's Bristol Ball Buster.
And a report on the 2011 112km event here: Audax Bristol 112k.
And here's Marcus's article for Arrivee about what goes on behind the scenes to organise the event: Feeding the 500 (pages 52/53).
Barry's Bristol Ball Buster
8:00am start, 13hr 30min time limit, finish by 9:30pm
The 'classic distance' 200km route (Brevet 'Randonnée') circumnavigates the city of Bristol before climbing up on to the Mendip Hills then down to the Somerset Levels and returning to the start point in Long Ashton.
Highlights include: Clifton Suspension Bridge, views of both Severn bridges, the Cotswold Escarpment, the Mendip Hills, Glastonbury Tor, the Somerset Levels, Gordano Valley.
With over 2000m of climbing over the 200km distance this is sure to test the legs of even the best riders.
Barry's Bristol Bash
9:30am start, 9hr17min time limit, finish by 6:47pm
The first of the shorter 116km routes (Brevet Populaire) heads north to take in the same route as the start of the Ball Buster but heads back to Long Ashton just south of Bristol instead of continuing onto the Mendips.
Highlights include: Clifton Suspension Bridge, views of both Severn bridges, the Cotswold Escarpment, Bristol City views from Dundry Hill.
Save some energy for the final climb over Dundry!
Barry's Bristol Blast
10:30am start, 9hr17min time limit, finish by 7:47pm
The second of the shorter 116km routes (Brevet Populaire) heads south to follow the same route as the second half of the Ball Buster, heading out from Long Ashton to Chew Stoke and then continuing onto the Mendips, down to the Somerset Levels and returning to the start point in Long Ashton.
Highlights include: the Mendip Hills, Glastonbury Tor, the Somerset Levels, Gordano Valley.
Barry's Jaeger Bomb
2nd September 2017
6:30am start, 20hr24min time limit, finish by 2:54am
A new 300km event for the Bristol area that takes riders up onto the Cotswolds down across Salisbury Plain along the Wylye Valley then back over the Mendips. Big old stones, beautiful roads and plenty of cake.
You'll be launched from the Bath Hill car park where bags can be left. 1st Control is at Perfomance Cycles in Poulton offering bacon butties for your 2nd breakfast. 2nd control is a free option from Amesbury's cornucopia of food outlets. 3rd Control at Olly's cafe in Brent Knoll for a last energy top up for the final push for home. Finish control at St Francis Church Hall with plenty of sweet and savoury food, free gratis for all finishers.
Entries open 1st May 2017
Start/FinishRiders on Barry's Bristol Ball Buster (214km) will set off at 8:00am.
Riders on Barry's Bristol Bash (116km) will set off at 9:30am.
Riders on Barry's Bristol Blast (116km) will set off at 10:30am.
View LVIS Audax Start/Finish Point in a larger map
The rides start from the Long Ashton Village Hall (Keedwell Hill, Bristol, BS41 9DP) where there will be toilets, hot drinks, and hot and cold food available. The food and drink at the start/finish is included in your entry fee, but there will be a collection for the charities WaterAid and Sustrans so please bring some cash! You will also need money to buy refreshments on the route.
There will be some parking at the village hall with on street parking nearby. Please consider riding to the start, sharing lifts or using public transport where possible.
Out on the Ride
If you've never ridden an Audax event before then expect a relaxed and friendly atmosphere (it's not a race), a variety of different types of riders and bikes and an enjoyable day out on some roads that you may not have ridden before. The ride is self guided and not sign-posted or marshalled so you should be competent at following a route sheet and carry tools, clothing and food to keep yourself out of trouble.
You can ride at your own pace, as long as your overall average speed, including stops, stays between the minimum and maximum
specified for the event.
Barry's Bristol Ball Buster: 15 - 30kph
Barry's Bristol Bash: 12.5 - 30kph
Barry's Bristol Blast: 12.5 - 30kph
At the start you get a brevet card, which has to be filled in at each checkpoint, to show that the course has been completed. The opening and closing times of the checkpoints (including the finish) are based on these minimum and maximum speeds.
Food and drink will be available to buy at the manned checkpoints across the events which are:
Hill Village Hall - Under the capable control of the local Church group and WI you will not believe how much cake, pavlova and home baked produce is on offer here.
Doynton Village Hall - Now rivalling the Hill control for quantity and quality of food, The Wick and Doynton WI will be providing a huge selection of savoury and sweet options with hot soup if it's cold and/or wet.
Glastonbury Town Hall - This control point will be manned and stocked by City Of Bristol Rowing Club who will be looking after and feeding hungry riders all afternoon.
The Drum and Monkey Pub, Kenn - Not far from the finish, this is a useful stop for a bar snack or swift half to get you through the last few kilometres.
Barry's Bristol Ball Buster uses all four controls.
Barry's Bristol Bash uses the Hill and Doynton controls
Barry's Bristol Blast uses the Glastonbury and Kenn controls.
There are also info controls, where you will need to answer the question given on your brevet card about a location on the route. If you do not put the correct answer on your card then we cannot validate that you have completed the ride.
The 'Freestone Warehouse Bike Bunch' will be helping out at the Doynton checkpoint while also displaying their wares. You can find out more about them at the following links:RyanBuildsWheels - Bespoke handbuilt wheels. Clandestine Clunker Club - Handbuilt racks. Purple Patch Workshop - Waxed cotton and canvas bags and accessories. 7 Pot Customs - Perfect paintjobs.
Sunrise is at about 07:00 Sunset is at about 19:45 so you will need lights for the long route and should consider carrying lights for the short routes.
Sections of the route are on narrow country lanes where there will be some mud and grit on the roads. It is strongly recommended that you fit mud guards to make the ride more comfortable for yourselves and those riding behind you.
To find out more about Audax UK follow this link: http://www.aukweb.net/aboutauk/
Profits from the event and any money collected on the day will be split between the following good causes
Barry's Bristol Ball Buster (214k)
|David||Clegg||Audax Club Bristol|
|Martin||Croxford||Audax Club Bristol|
|Andy||Curran||Audax Club Bristol|
|Frauke||Diehl||Audax Club Bristol|
|Martin||Disney||Trowbridge Cycling Club|
|Russell||Filby||BRCC / ACB|
|Richard||Goucher||Audax Club Bristol|
|Mark||Green||Audax Club Bristol|
|Jason||Gunn||Trowbridge Cycling Club|
|Justin||Headlong||Timsbury Cycle Group|
|Ben||Holder||Audax Club Bristol|
|Luke||Hounsome||Audax Club Bristol|
|Tony||Hull||Chippenham and Dist Wheelers|
|Oliver||Iles||Audax Club Bristol|
|David||Johnston||Audax Club Bristol|
|Ewan||Johnstone||Bristol South CC|
|Mike||Lane||Audax Club Bristol|
|Daniel||Lunnon||Velo Club Walcot|
|Daniel||Mahler||Audax Club Bristol|
|Max||Malpass||North Bristol Triathlon|
|Stefano||Marazzi||Timsbury Cycle Group|
|Simon||Napper||Chepstow Cycling Club|
|Ian||Penton-Voak||Las Vegas Institute of Sport|
|Julian||Plummer||Audax Club Bristol|
|Jess||Railton||Audax Club Bristol|
|Paul||Rainbow||Audax Club Bristol|
|Steve||Ransom||North Bristol Cycle Club|
|Steve||Rosewarne||Audax Club Bristol|
|David||Sleigh||Audax Club Bristol|
|Richard||Taylor||CTC + NBCC|
|Neil||Veitch||Audax Club Bristol|
|Clifford||Wallis||Nailsea RC Bikers|
|Adam||Watkins||Audax Club Bristol|
|Sarah||West||Bristol Road Club|
|Doug||Wilson||Audax Club Bristol|
|Mike||Wood||Sou Western RC|
|Robert||Wragge-Morley||Audax Club Bristol|
Barry's Bristol Bash (116k)
|Catherine||Barker||Bristol CTC / NBCC|
|Tim||Birtwistle||Minerva Bath Rowing Club|
|Andrew||Bowman||Trowbridge Cycling Club|
|Aileen||Brown||Bristol(Bath) CTC & Bath CC|
|Leon||Gierat||Lvis/ Bristol cx|
|Mark||Greenwood||White Tree Rouleurs|
|Deborah||Griffin||Timsbury Cycle Group|
|Nick||Hannan||Trowbridge Cycling Club|
|David||Hayhurst||Cardiff and SE Wales CTC|
|Dave||Hewlett||Disciples of Dirt|
|Ken||Ireland||Trowbridge cycle club TCC|
|Tom||Marshall||Bristol South Cycling Club|
|Chris||Osborne||Thornbury Cycling Club|
|Stuart||Robertson||ctc Abergaveny CC|
|Alison||Sainsbury||Timsbury Cycle Group|
|Mark||Sheardown||White Tree Rouleurs|
|Jim||Spratt||Cheltenham & County cc|
|Steve||Swabey||AJAX Cycling Club|
Barry's Bristol Blast (116k)
|Nick||Baker||Las Vegas Institute of Sport|
|Paul||Bath||Sodbury Cycle Sport|
|Giles||Davis||Las Vegas Institute of Sport|
|Jean||De Fromage||Team Iron Finger|
|Catrin||Devonald||We vote Wheelers|
|Anna||Dixon||SAlt ans Sham|
|Huw||Evans||We vote wheelers|
|Claire||Gregory||Kingswood Tri Club|
|Andy||Hayes||Bridgewater cycling club|
|Paul||House||Nailsea RC Bikers|
|Luke||Humphries||Timsbury Cycle Group|
|Tim||Marchant||velo club walcot|
|Mary||Tedaldi||Salt and Sham|
Here is some of the fantastic feedback we have received after previous years' events. We had to bribe people with cake to say this nice stuff, but hopefully they meant it!
A big thank you for a fantastic day out on the bike :-) Perfect organisation, perfect route and perfect weather... Can you pass on my gratitude to all of the very friendly support crew.... See you again next year.
That was my first Audax, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Bit on the chilly side (and yes, I also found icicles hanging off my bottom bracket). Well done, and the cakes were amazing. Definitely doing the 200km next year - as long as you can arrange for less Baltic conditions next time.
The organisation was really impressive, the route was excellent and the mix of people was wonderful.
Great day out - Cheers LVIS!
Yet again you managed to secure the best weather, and the event was expertly run (again!) and most enjoyable. This event is definitely (in my opinion) the jewel in the crown of the Audax series.
A brilliant ride - cheers
Amazing event.. We were lucky with the beautiful weather but the incredible LVIS team, spectacular riding, friendly fellow travellers and the WI of Doynton (and their cakes) were what made it so special.. Hope to be back again..
Best Cakes ever, ever, ever!
A superbly run event and very enjoyable route. Fantastic cake and even for us tailenders still a great choice left.
I enjoyed the lovely scenery , people, route, brilliant controls and wonderful bean and bacon soup at the finish. Congratulations LVIS, this one is a winner I will be back....
That was such a cracking day. 130 miles and I wanted it to be longer.
Just a quick note to thank you and your colleagues for a great audax yesterday. The organisation was impeccable and the tweaks to the route from last year were just the ticket. Roll on 2012 and many thanks again.
Thanks Marcus it was an amazing first Audax experience for me. So friendly.
Well done, and thanks for organising. see yers next year.
Thanks again for orgainising such an awesome event. It was one heck of a way to start off my Audax career, it might have been cold on the Mendips but the welcome back at Long Ashton (and all the awesome cake stops) was very warm.
Great fun, superbly organised. As for the cakes - what can I possibly add? Fantastic. Thanks Marcus and team. Go Vegas!
What a day. Thanks.Very glad you let me ride the shorter route after all. It was a bit brutal yesterday, particularly when the temp dropped below 0. Very very well organised though.
Fantastic route, great people, great cakes and great weather...what more can you ask for.
Great day - many thanks to both you and the WI for a truly epic cakefest.
I'd just like to say a big thank you to everyone for yesterday's event - great route, great weather and riding in good company. The WI ladies made some amazing cakes. When can I sign up for next year?
I rode your great Audax yesterday. What fine cakes and weather we had and it was worth the trip from cardiff. Thanks for organising a great event.
Great to have so many willing helpers and smiling faces (not to mention a bit younger than the usual Audax average age!) Great food. Excellent route. Thanks guys!!
Fantastic ride today, good work LVIS!! Go Vegas!!!
Congratulations on your successful and brilliantly organized ride. My thanks to everyone involved, not forgetting my helpful riding companions.
i just wanted to say a massive thank you for organising an amazing event. well done for not giving into pressure from the UCI to re-route, like the organisers of the Milan-San Remo did, and sticking to your principles of cake, tea, chimineas and even a pub. it was a fantastic day, made even more epic by frozen ice on people's beards. the best cycling event i've done.
Just a quick mucho thank you to you and the rest of the gang for putting on yet another quality event. We both enjoyed it immensely and are looking forward to the third running already!
It was cold, but that justified eating more cake! Velodrome cake was my favourite, just edging pavlova. Apart from cake, ta for putting on such a top day out and a rather good cycle ride. See you next year
Thanks for an absolutely brilliant day, and a wonderful introduction to the world of Audax. I didn't know there was so many great little lanes for cycling along around this area and am still marvelling at the fact that we got all round Bristol without cycling on hardly any main roads. Beautiful weather, fabulous route, fantastic organisation, and delicious cakes - what more can a cyclist want!
As always a faultless day by you guys!! Fantastic pavlova, route & weather!! See you next year!
Excellent as ever, all aspects of the day...kinda liked the cold in an odd way, esp. once I was home!
Thanks Marcus for another great day... Perfecto!
Marky and Kirsty, it was magnificent. Hard core! I did it in 3 base layers, a jersey and a primaloft jacket, scull cap, merino walking socks, overshoes and windstopper tights. And primaloft mittens. I was just about warm enough apart from when we set off after too much cake. Twice.
Great day's riding today - thanks for all your organising and/or volunteering efforts, and of course everybody else involved too - a slick operation. Look forward to next year's event!
Thank you very much again for organising yesterday's AUDAX, it was absolutely brilliant.
We enjoyed our ride... Longest I've ever done.. Cake stops were AWESUME
Thanks to LVIS for a great day out, lovely scenery and good company on the 112k. My only gripe... the pavlova was gone when I got to Hill (will go faster next time). The cake selection was awesome, and the bean & bacon soup at the end really hit the spot.
What a cracking ride today. Excellent. And the cakes were something else!
It's my considered opinion that the Hill Women's Institute cake stop after 40km of the Ball Buster is the single best stop on any ride in the UK. It's astonishing. If you know of a better one, let me know so I can come and give it a go.
A brrrrrr - illiant day. Thanks. Can I give a thank you to the girls at Heaphy's who stayed open just long enough to serve me some hot pasta, and the 'Control' who were still in welcoming good humour at half five. As the guy that phoned you up from Portbury, I can provide an interesting meterological insight- it actually got warmer after dark!
What a great ride. The route was mixed with great views. And the food controls were brilliant thanks to all the kind and wonderfull cake makers and staff for looking after us.
This is the first time I've done this ride and definitely the best one so far and I'll be sure to get my name down early next year!! Thanks again to everyone...
My first but not my last Audax. Well organised. Please can it be warmer next year...
Great Audax. Already a classic! Thank you for organising such a brilliant cycle event, and thank you to all who assisted on the day. I'm sure you realise that you are going to get huge numbers of people entering next year. Good luck.
I really enjoyed the Audax yesterday (apart from the evil hill up to the monument!!) and the sun you ordered made it particularly splendid. Having the second WI stop made all the difference, they were fantastic.
Cracking cracking day at the LVIS Audax.... 225kms, sunshine, smiles & serious amounts of cake!
Marvellous ride today, great weather & awesome cakes. Go Vegas!
Thanks for an excellent event to you, Kirsty and everyone else who made it such a fantastic day despite the cold.
Thanks for organising a great event. We new to this and really enjoyed ourselves right at the back but we made it round.
Thank you for a great day , well organised, great route but best of all was the food, many thanks to all your helpers and bakers i was very impressed with the quality of the scram
I just wanted to pass on my thanks and congratulations to all involved in the organisation and running of what, for me, was a truly fantastic day. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am looking forward to my next one! The organisation was absolutely brilliant, and really made the day such a success. My sincerest thanks to you all.
I can, hand on heart, say that I thoroughly enjoyed the whole day. We had cracking weather, a good route, much friendly banter with the other riders, and the organisation was simply brilliant.
Great day out, so pleased not to have got lost , will sleep very well tonight. Well done to all and thanks for all the encouragement up those hills
It was a beautiful day - apart from those damn hills which forced me to swear a lot (inside). Nice weather and met so many wonderful new friends. I wish I will meet you all soon at other cycling events, especially the LVIS ones! Cheers.
Great ride and super organisation plus the Pavlova was as good as ever
What a great day! A fantastic event and, for me, a great introduction to audax. First audax, first time ever that I've cycled further than 60 miles (& fixed), most pavolova I've eaten in a morning, and the largest slices of coffee cake I've ever seen (and come to think of it, probably the largest spread of cakes I've ever seen in one room). What struck me was how sociable it was, with chatty people at every stage (except on one or two of the hills). Thank you to LVIS for laying on a well-organised and memorable event, and the WIs for the sustenance.
Well done Marcus and the LVIS team. Great day out. Setting the standard on the Audax calendar!
Thoroughly enjoyed it, route (100k) was lovely, great food and company. Many thanks to all involved :-D
Firstly thanks for organising the event last Sunday, it was certainly an unforgettable experience! Thanks so much to you and the team for organising a fantastic event - my first audax and I'll be back for more! Found it very friendly and relaxed - a great day out, even though I was frozen half the time!
What a great day and what great organisation. Thank you very much for showing us a whole load of new routes to add to those we already do.
Finally defrosted! But wanted to say that was one of the most gruelling - but best ever rides! Cakes stunning! The last few miles I have no idea where I was, sat nav dies, lights on last legs, me on last legs! whole of me frozen to the bike... but what a great bowl of soup and stunning Christmas cake at the finish! Would you also pass my thanks onto your team and also the WI who were truly fantastic! Thank you so much - BRILLIANT! Hopefully this is the start of many more LVIS Audax THANK YOU!
I have to say Master Mumford That was a great event. It was way too cold and mostly unenjoyable. But it was a lovely bunch of people, fantastic cakes, great community spirit, belly warming charity and all round brilliant. As they say, first time caller long time listener. I shall be back when my sugar levels drop.
Many thanks for a great day. I did finish the ride but forgot to report in at the HQ - I was distracted by the tea and cakes.
Legend had told me about this ride & the cakes but nothing prepared me for the cakefest at Hill !!! The Pavlova was fantastic
I loved everything about the event and wouldn't change a thing - except the weather, obviously. I'm glad to hear that you are planning to do it all again next year and I look forward to taking part again. Congratulations on the sums raised for excellent charities.
Thanks for today. Well organised, great fun, lovely route, wonderful cake and even the promised sun came out! Go Vegas!
A superbly organised event which must take a lot of work. All much appreciated.
116km of tarmac party.
Despite living in Bristol two-thirds of the roads were new to me, lovely cakes (and lots of them), and a really nice atmosphere! Even the weather came good in the afternoon. Will definitely be back next year!
Another great LVIS event and I would like to hear about any more similar events you might be organizing. Thanks very much for an excellent day.
It was a great day - really good route - I shall be trying it again - great people excellent cakes Many thanks for all your work putting it together.
Thank you both for an amazing day - and all the LVIS helpers. We'll, as they say, be back.
I enjoyed the Audax yesterday, excellent route, superb catering (I think I weighed more at the finish than the start!) it takes me back to the Audax's of my teens. It was great to see such a large and diverse turn out. My congratulations on what must be the "best" Audax/event I have ridden in a very long time.
Just a quick word of thanks for organising such a brilliant ride yesterday. It was my first Audax and I did the shorter ride. It was a great day with some fantastic scenery - I didn't realise just how many wonderful places are so close to Bristol, I intend to retrace a lot of the ride and do a bit more exploring. It was great to ride with so many friendly people, I'm still buzzing one day later!
Just wanted to say a hearty and now warm having defrosted thanks for another well-organised and friendly day. We always make sure we say thanks to the lovely WI for their cakes and efforts in prising some of us from our chairs instead of staying put. I'd noticed that it seems more of a club riders faster day than when I did it a few years back. But for those of us that are happy to take the day to cycle round we still found it friendly so please keep it's 'got a bike? can do it then' inclusivity just for those of us who take rucksacks of sarnies and scotch eggs than energy bars (-:
Thanks to Marcus and the LVIS crew, excellent job again. Even exceeded last years event with even more quality cake! A great day out and I think the few small route changes all worked well. Look forward to next year and yes Go LVIS!
Loved the slightly revised route and the first 90km - the last 20km weren't so pleasant though. Another excelent Audax that would make the esteemed Mr Jaegar proud.
Superb day! Cheers to all those putting in the hard work organising it all! And cheers Barry Jaeger for sorting the weather this year!!!!