Hill climbs and mass ride in a celebration of cycling

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Sheffield is gearing up for two weekends of cycling action.

On Sunday the third and final Sky Ride takes place, with hundreds of people expected to take part in the free mass participation event between 11am and 3pm.

For the first time, Endcliffe Park will host the start and finish of the 8.5km course.

The route takes in Ecclesall Road, Bramall Lane stadium and the Winter Garden, and bikes can be hired for free in Tudor Square and from the park, where activities and a ‘festival atmosphere’ are promised.

Around 7,000 people have taken part in the Sheffield ride since its first outing in 2014. After this year, the partnership between Sky and British Cycling ends. There may be similar future events, but not under the Sky Ride banner.

Beforehand, on Saturday, elite cyclists will take on the ‘Cote de Wincobank’ climb by racing to the top of Jenkin Hill. Novices can also test their stamina on the incline.

The hill formed one of the most gruelling challenges of the Tour de France’s Grand Depart in 2014, which passed through Sheffield. The council has sought to keep the spirit of the Tour alive with activities on the race’s anniversary.

Meanwhile, next Friday at 7.30pm, a hill climb first held two years ago between Low and High Bradfield returns.

The climb, organised by Marc Etches of the Sheffield Grand Prix, Andrew Elston of Langsett Cycles and the Sheffrec CC club, starts opposite the post office at the bottom of Woodfall Lane and finishes outside the Old Horns pub.

The stretch has a maximum gradient of 35 per cent.

Andrew said: “The view allows you to look down and see the riders struggle up the hill, you can take in the spectacular scenery and there’s a pub and a brewery at the top - it’s perfect.”

Last year it was revealed that the Tour de Yorkshire cycling race - organised in the wake of the Grand Depart’s success - will call at the new Fox Valley development in Stocksbridge.