Full route details for the King’s Cup Gravel Festival and British Gravel Championships will be published shortly before the event. Kings Forest is a freehold woodland meaning there is an open access policy for walkers, cyclists and horse riders. These woodlands are “forests for all”, so we ask you to be respectful of all other forest users. Individual cycling is welcomed in the King’s Forest, however, organised groups will need to seek Forestry England approval. Keep scrolling for route descriptions and some of the best pictures for our most recent adventure in the King’s Forest!
TIME TRIAL & TEAM RELAY
Upon leaving the Event HQ arena the first 4km take riders over fast hard packed pebble gravel and some loose chippings. The following 1km heads through woodland where the track enjoys the benefit of vehicle tracks with a grassy surface between.
Coming out of the woodland the routes rolls along on tightly packed chippings heading north until riders have to navigate a grassy trail as a link to the next gravel section at 8km. The link route is still a vehicle width but has some stretches of more overgrown heading which can easily be avoided. The most northerly part of the route and the turning point where riders head for home is reached on tracks which are a mixture of gravel, sand and grass.
The Queen Mary Avenue and the Icknield Way lead the riders back close to the Arena. The route takes one more deviation at around 14km onto firm pea gravel tracks for a loop prior to re-joining the Icknield Way before entering the arena. The final stretch of the Icknield Way has a predominance of loose sand on its uneven surface. There is a change of surface from sand to grass as riders re-enter the arena.
GRAVEL RACE & FONDO
The Gravel Race and Gravel Fondo routes begin on the same route as the Time Trial (TT) with the first 4km take riders over fast hard packed pebble gravel and some loose chippings. The following 1km heads through woodland where the track enjoys the benefit of vehicle tracks with a grassy surface between.
After 5km the route deviates from the TT route. For 4km the trails take riders through woodland on a mixture of pea gravel, grass and hard packed sand. The route then re-joins the TT route for around 1km on hard packed chippings again, a very fast surface. The route then turns left onto wide grassy tracks through woodland between 11km and 15km, after which it re-joins the TT route to the end of the lap. The final stretch of the Icknield Way has a predominance of loose sand on its uneven surface. There is a change of surface from sand to grass as riders re-enter the arena. Depending on the event category and age group riders will complete this lap 2-3 times.