We used to call Felix English, the boy who beat Chris Hoy, but he's been through a rapid transformation in the past two seasons and is now a fully fledged member of the Men in Black. After struggling through the Tour Series in 2012, English was a force to be reckoned with in the 2013 series, before he took the biggest win of his career at the prestigious Otley Crit, in June.
His ride can begin in either Brighton or Lewes and heads east towards the chalky headland of Beachy Head, highest chalk sea cliff in Britain. The route then loops back along the coast passing through Saltdean, a town that features an array of Bauhaus and Cubist architecture as well as the beautifully restored Art Deco Saltdean Lido.
The run into Brighton is along a busy carriageway, however there is a cycle lane provided to take you neatly past the Brighton Marina and towards the famous 'Lanes' shopping district, where Felix said he's found "the best coffee in East Sussex, Small Batch Coffee Co."
The final climb before heading back to Lewes is as rewarding as the ascent to Beachy Head. When you reach the top of the climb on Ditchling Road, instead of naturally turning right onto the fast A27 (signposted to Lewes) cross the main road and continue climbing. Soon the trees will ease and a patchwork of green fields will fill the view with the multicoloured Brighton residences in the distance.
Length: 3.6 miles
After the junction with the A27, continue on Firle Road, the section begins as you pass a farm track on the left and collection of brick houses. When you reach a cross roads, turn right following signs to Berwick on Langtye Ln. The section finishes at the T-junction.
East Dean/Beachy Head
Length: 3.0 miles
Elevation gain: 310 ft
Climb begins just out of East Dean when the road starts to tilt upwards. Turn right onto Warren Hill, signed post Beachy Head. The road dips just after this, a signpost directs you right toward Beachy Head. The finish is at a small metal gate opposite a small road that joins from the right.
Ditchling Rd Climb
Length: 1.0 miles
Elevation gain: 129 ft
Climbing begins as you turn right onto Surrenden Rd, and continues as you turn left onto Ditchling Rd at the end of the Ditchling Rd, turn left and cross the A27 and then turn right and continue back onto the Ditchling Rd. The climb finishes as the road dips and there is a small brown parking signpost.
Cafe stop: Small Batch Coffee Co.
17 Jubilee Street,
Located in the ground floor of Myhotel, the Jubilee Street store is their flagship shop. Alongside the usual Small Batch espresso menu they offer brewed coffee at the syphon bar, a must for any filter coffee lovers.