White Roads Classic Sportive


The Lapierre White Roads Classic

The Lapierre White Roads Classic is a road-based sportive which also takes in 40km of white gravel and chalk roads on and around The Ridgeway in Oxfordshire; an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Choose the epic new 100-mile option or the original 100 km route.

Sunday 9 July 2017.


**A 100-mile route option will be added for the first time in 2017, to run in parallel with the original 100km (62-mile) distance. The full 100-mile route includes 18 white road sectors, making the White Roads Classic one of the toughest cycle events in Britain – as well as one the most aesthetically beautiful.**


Modelled on the epic European Classic Strade Bianche

The  Lapierre White Roads Classic is an homage to the most beautiful professional bike race in the world: the Italian one-day Classic known as the Strade Bianche – a race held annually in the hills of Tuscany in early Spring. It features several old white gravel roads or ‘strade bianche’ or ‘sterrati‘, which are becoming as iconic as the cobbled roads of Roubaix and Flanders. The White Roads Classic also features white gravel and chalk roads (eighteen in total, ranging from 1300m to 5300m in length), all of which have been selected as suitable for road bikes. On a sunny day these roads are a brilliant white. The route is situated in the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, on and around the 8000-year- old chalk ‘Ridgeway’ – the oldest road in the country, on which there are several Neolithic and Iron Age sites. The event will have an Italian theme, with a variety of Italian foods, espresso, and a glass of prosecco for every finisher.


Mark Cavendish rides alone along one of the many white gravel roads in Tuscany during the 2014 Strade Bianche race.

White Roads Classic Sportive

One of the many White Roads on The Ridgeway

The Tuscany-like landscape of the Ridgeway

The Tuscany-like landscape of the Ridgeway

The original 100 km (62-mile) route skips sectors 8, 9 and 10, but is otherwise the same as the full 100-mile (160 km) route.

The White Roads Classic will be held on Sunday 9 July 2017, starting and finishing at the magnificent Basildon Park (National Trust). Entries are priced at £30. You can sign up using British Cycling’s online entry system – click on the red ‘ENTER’ button below. The event is promoted by Cycle Classics, who also organize the Tour of the Black Country, a Roubaix-inspired sportive, featuring 19 cobbled sectors and a velodrome finish and the Cheshire Cobbled Classic, which includes several steep cobbled climbs, including the infamous 45% Corkscrew.

comp_enterEnter the Lapierre White Roads Classic

White Gravel Sectors – 2017

START  (0 km) Basildon Park (National Trust)  
Sector 17  (km) Streatley 2000m
Sector 16  (km) Starveall 1300m
Sector 15  (km) Roden Downs 5300m
Sector 14  (km) East Ilsley 2000m
Sector 13  (km) Tile Barn 3400m
Sector 12  (km) Harwell Field  1900m
Sector 11  (km) East Ginge 1300m
Sector 10  (km) White Horse Hill 1600m
FEED 1   (km) The Royal Oak, Bishopstone  
Sector 9  (km) Bishopstone 3800m
Sector 8  (km) Upper Lambourn* 3400m
Sector 7  (km) Letcombe Castle 2600m
FEED 2   (km) Court Hill Centre, Wantage  
Sector 6  (km) Farnborough Down 1500m
Sector 5  (km) East Ilsley North 2000m
Sector 4  (km) Churn Road 2600m
Sector 3  (km) Aldworth 1500m
Sector 2  (km) Starveall North 1300m
Sector 1  (km) Streatley East 2000m
FINISH  (160km) Basildon Park (National Trust)  

Cycling Weekly’s Insider’s Guide to the White Roads Classic

CW Insider’s Guide WRC 2016 CW Insiders WRC Capture


Cheshire Cobbled Classic – White Roads Classic- Tour of the Black Country

(White Roads Classic footage begins at 01:37)


Basildon Park (National Trust). Start and Finish HQ of the White Roads Classic. The 2014 Downton Abbey Christmas Special was filmed here.

Sign Post at the base of Dragon Hill

Road sign at the base of Dragon Hill, leading up to White Road sector 10 on The Ridgeway.

Dragon Hill, overlooking the Oxford plain.

Dragon Hill, overlooking the Oxford plain. The approach to White Road sector 10 (1600m) on The Ridgeway.

White Road sector 7 (2600m) near Letcombe Castle

White Road sector 7 (2600m) near Letcombe Castle – an Iron Age hill fort

The 2000m Streatley sector above. Downhill at 5%. The last of the White Roads; only 5km remain at the end of this sector.

White Roads Classic Streatley Sector

Final White Road sector (2000m) at Streatley

Flying pebbles and chalk dust above on the final White Road sector (2000m) at Streatley, where The Ridgeway drops down to the Thames.

The White Roads Classic finishes in Goring-on-Thames.

The Lapierre White Roads Classic finishes in Goring-on-Thames.

2016 Cycling Weekly Insider’s Guide Photoshoot

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Photos from the 2016 Lapierre White Roads Classic event

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Photos from the 2015 Lapierre White Roads Classic event


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White Horse Hill, just before white road sector 10.

Lapierre Bikes

'Glorious gravel'.

- Sportif Magazine.

'Beautiful, gentle tarmac descents that go on for miles'.

- Richard H.

'I've never undertaken one of these mass participation sportives...most look dull as dishwater. In my opinion the only ones worth investing time and money in are the quirky Tour of the Black Country Series including the Cheshire Cobbles and Oxford White Roads Classic... Quirky, relatively cheap, very challenging and a whole lotta fun.'

- Andrew C.

'Thanks for a great sportive yesterday. Really enjoyed the route and great food and drink after'.

- Leigh S.

A typical White Road on The Ridgeway

A typical White Road on The Ridgeway


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Photos: henryiddon.com