Beating yourself up in France (on a bike) is an annual rite for many British cyclists L'Etape du Tour is the star turn, but true connoseiurs of pain head for the Marmotte.
This annual charity ride finishes with a gentle pootle up Alpe d'Huez – that's after you've knocked off the Croix de Fer, Col Du Télegraphe, and the Galibier along the way.
Online entry is now apparently open, mind you the ride itself may not be quite as daunting as negotiating the website to enter, the nice people at Tour d'Oisans describe it as "cryptic" which is certainly the 'glass half full' way of describing it.
If you want to enter this is the place to do it… good luck.
Tony has been editing cycling magazines and websites since 1997 starting out as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning road.cc - which he continues to edit today. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes.