More than 1,000 cycling fans will set off from Longbridge town centre to take on the Mad March Hare Sportive on Sunday 24 March.

Cyclists will start the 66-mile challenge from Devon Way at 8am and are expected to finish the course between 10:45am and 3.30pm. The route will see participants take in the Worcestershire, Staffordshire and Shropshire countryside, before returning to Longbridge for the home stretch.

Local businesses have partnered with the Mad March Hare Sportive organisers to ensure the event, which is in its 11th year, is a success. Developer St. Modwen, whose headquarters are in the town centre, has offered space to host the event as well as providing rider parking and independent bicycle shop, 3CJ Cycle Centre has extended its opening hours to cater for cyclists’ last minute needs.

Residents are invited to cheer on the participants, many of whom will be raising money for their chosen charities. The event will raise money for Love Brum, with proceeds from fundraising, parking and on-the-day donations going towards the local charity.

Keen cyclist Jonathan Green, Director of Asset Management at St. Modwen, said:

“The Mad March Hare Sportive is one of the first major cycling events of the year, so there’s bound to be a great buzz in Longbridge.

“It’s fantastic to have an event of this scale taking place here and we’re pleased to have played a part in making it possible. Hopefully those taking part and coming out to support will take advantage of some of the great amenities Longbridge has to offer, including a number of great cafès, pubs and shops.”

Corinne Fox, Event Director at Mad March Hare Sportive and cycling enthusiast, added:

“We’re really looking forward to hosting the Mad March Hare Sportive in Longbridge and have already received so much support from local businesses and residents. We’re hoping that people who live and work in the area will come out and cheer for those taking on the 66 mile-route and will join us in giving them a warm welcome when they return.”

For more information on the Mad March Hare Sportive, please visit www.madhare.cc.