IT’S ladies first for a new women only cycling challenge in the South Lakes.

The Ladies of the Lake event will start at Swarthmoor Hall, Ulverston, and will take in two routes around Coniston and Grizedale.

Event Director Alan Brenton said: “We've noticed when riding sportive events, that there tends to be a difference between the way men and women ride them.

“Even the women who are going fast appear more likely to have a chat and enjoy the whole experience, rather than just ride for a fast time.

“We've also talked to a lot of women who would like to try a sportive but feel a little intimidated.”

Sportive Lakes is putting on the ladies day, where there will be a choice between a short route at 29 miles, and a longer route at 36 miles.

The organisation was set up by Mr Brenton who hopes that these events will put Ulverston permanently on the cycling map.

He added: “Ulverston is the only town with direct, quiet lane access to the South Lakes, which also has direct rail and rail to airport links.

“We aim to use our events as a catalyst to develop the town as the South Lakes Cycle Gateway.”

Sportive Lakes said it aims to be different by placing a strong emphasis on the social element of riding and being welcoming to new and novice sportive riders.

The Ladies of the Lake event will take place on September 14.

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