ABOUT 8000 passports have already been sent to registered cyclists keen to conquer the alpine ascent challenge.
The 2016-17 7 Peaks Ride season in Victoria’s High Country launched on Friday and continues until March 31.
It challenges road cyclists to climb the seven Victorian peaks of Mount Baw Baw, Mount Buffalo, Mount Buller, Dinner Plain, Falls Creek, Mount Hotham and Lake Mountain.
Launched on Friday, the www.7peaks.com.au website acknowledges and celebrates the growth in women’s road cycling with 100 Women’s Stories.
Fifty real-life stories by women who have completed one or more of Victoria’s 7 Peaks feature on the new site, with 50 more to be added by women tackling the challenge throughout the 7 Peaks season.
Wangaratta woman Claire Turnbull, 25, said her boyfriend introduced her to the 7 Peaks challenge.
“I told him I only wanted to do Mount Buller and Mount Buffalo but ended up doing all seven,” she said.
“He was by my side every step of the way and encouraged me to finish all seven.”
Ms Turnbull, a Benalla pharmacy dispensary technician, said Mount Buller was her first peak.
“I think Mount Hotham and Baw Baw were the most challenging for me both mentally and physically,” she said.
“I don’t think I could have completed them without my boyfriend’s company and support.
“I love the thrill and achievement you get when you reach the top, you feel physically exhausted but relieved and it’s so satisfying, the pain in your legs and bum just goes away!
“The best part is enjoying the amazing views while riding.”
At the top of each peak, riders can record their achievements with a stamp in their 7 Peaks Passport or enter results on Strava using the official ride segments at Strava.com/Clubs/7peaksride.
Cyclists tough enough to ride and register four or more peaks will be in the running for the grand prize of a European cycling holiday for two coinciding with the 2017 Tour de France with Wide Open Road Cycling Tours.
Anyone completing all seven peaks will be eligible for the highly sought-after 7 Peaks jersey.
Cyclists looking for a perfect way in to the new riding season should consider the Domestique Ride at Lake Mountain on Sunday, November 13.
New and seasoned 7 Peakers alike will enjoy the support and encouragement of this fun social ride, a great event to start the challenging cycling season ahead.
To register visit www.domestiqecycling.cc/rides