Rider Information

Information for riders taking part in the Black Rat Sportive on Sunday May 19th 


Registration will take place on  Sunday 19th May from 7.15am at Marlwood School.

Entrance gate to Marlwood School (Start/Finish) will open at 7.00am on Sunday.

Address of HQ: Marlwood School, Vattingstone Lane, Alveston, Bristol, BS35 3LA

If you use the What 3 Words app, the location of Marlwood School is: supposing.hogs.verb

Directions: From Junction 16 of the M5, follow the A38 to Thornbury. At the traffic lights outside of Berkeley Vale Motors, turn left into Alveston Hill. After approx. 250m turn left opposite the Ship Inn on to Down Road, heading towards Aust. After approx. 500m turn right into Vattingstone Lane. The school is approx. 250m down this road.

Parking: There is enough parking on site for approx. 400 cars. Marshals will direct you to park your car considerately to allow everyone to have a space.

When you have parked, please go to the registration area to collect your rider number and timing chip if you have not already done so.

There is a new registration system in operation this year, so you do not need to know your rider number in advance. All you need to know is your name! The ladies on registration will be able to find you on the system and allocate a number as you arrive.

Registration will open at 7.15am on Sunday morning.

As you will have agreed to the terms and conditions of taking part when you entered the event, you will not need to sign a disclaimer at registration.

Your timing chips will need to be attached to your bike. They are stuck to the back of your rider number so you just need to attach the number to your bars with zip ties that will be supplied.

Emergency numbers:

Jeremy 07725227693

Tony 07967897860

Anders 07738613330

If you need assistance on the course, please call one of the above numbers and we will direct a mechanic to you. In some parts of the course the mobile phone signal will be very poor. Please try sending a text or ask other riders to contact us when they have a good signal. The above numbers can also be found on the reverse side of your rider number.

Mechanics will be mobile and will come across you if contact is impossible.

We have staggered the start times to ensure that there won’t be large groups of riders hanging around prior to the event and so that other road users aren’t inconvenienced by lots of riders being in a large group.

Ride Start Times:

We will stagger the start so groups of 50 can start at 5 min intervals.

Granfondo: 8.00am – 8.30am

Mediofondo: 8.30am – 9.00am

Piccolofondo: 9.00am – 9.30am

ONLY riders taking part in the Granfondo (GF) and Mediofondo (MF) events to start prior to 9.00am.

This is important because for the two longer distances we will have a timing mat set up just after the start. Anyone riding the Piccolofondo (PF) event should NOT cross this timing mat. It will be removed before the start of the PF ride.

When you start riding, you will be directed to the route by the marshal at the exit to the school. Please follow our signage, which will be black with an orange arrow. We have found in previous years that this is different enough from other signage so that no one follows the wrong signs.

A map of each route is available on the route detail page on this website. The maps can be downloaded to your GPS device.

The three main routes follow the same roads until you reach Monmouth. Anyone taking part in the Minifondo route will follow the same route as everyone else until Hewelsfield and then turn left towards Brockweir.

The first feed station will be located in Monmouth. It will be well signposted.

All GF riders MUST cross the timing mat at The Talgarth Feed Station in order to be given a Granfondo time. Failure to do so will result in you being given a Mediofondo time.

When you return to the school to finish the ride please ride through the finish arch to ensure that you get a time for your ride.

Your food will be available at the finish upon the return of your timing chip. Please contact us if you require vegetarian option.


All riders: After descending to Monmouth, you need to cross the A40 at the traffic lights. This is a busy junction, so please be aware of other traffic.

In Monmouthshire generally, there seem to be a lot of roadworks and temporary traffic lights at the moment. Please take care when negotiating single lane sections.

Mediofondo riders will see ROAD CLOSED signs after leaving Rockfield. It is ok to continue on the road because you turn off before the closure.

Minifondo riders will encounter a short stretch (approx 200m) of gravel on the descent from Hewelsfield to Brockweir. This has been washed on to the road by recent storms. Please take extra care.

Take extra care at the roundabout approaching Raglan. as you will be on a busy road for a short time.