The Ontario gravel season kicked off on Easter Sunday with the Hell of the North classic, founded by Mike Barry Sr. over 30 years ago, and now organized by Ed Veal.   The riders were greeted with a dusting of snow at the start, but the sun quickly melted the snow and the course conditions were dry, cold and windy.  The Mariposa Team had 4 riders at the event: Peter Morse, Andrew MacEachern, Hudson Lubbers, Michael and Ashlin Barry.

Michael, Ashlin and Peter raced on Mariposa custom steel bikes.  Ashlin and Michael opted for René Herse Bon Jon 700C x 35mm Endurance slick tires mounted on Princeton Carbonworks 4540 Allroad Carbon wheels, which proved to be ideal for the conditions. The slick tires performed well as the dirt and gravel tracks were fairly dry and fast in comparison to past editions while the PCW Grit wheels, because of their sinusoidal design, were quick and stable in the high winds. Two-time Paris 2 Ancaster gravel race winner, Peter Morse rode on his go-to gravel tire favourites, the Maxxis Rambler 700C x 40mm, which is a great all around tire for almost any condition.

In a tough finale over some rough dirt tracks, Ashlin managed to punch his way into a three man break with 20 km to go. He then beat his breakaway companions, Adam Millar (Team Ascent) and Luke Valenti (Toronto Hustle) in a sprint to the line in Ballantrae, to take the victory.

The gravel calendar is packed in the weeks and months ahead.  We have a wide range of tires, wheels, sealants, tapes, lubes and pressure gauges that will help you up your gravel game.  They are available on our website to purchase, but also, please do not hesitate contact us by e-mail or phone for recommendations.  Our team has a deep level of gravel racing experience and it would be our pleasure to help you discover the most efficient set up.

Photography by Amanda Sarah Cherish.

Photography by Amanda Sarah Cherish.


2 thoughts on “Hell of the North 2022

  1. Great to see the photos and report on Hell of the North. I organised this event many years ago with the help of Midweek Cycling Club members. I remember sitting in our unheated trailer, recording the finishers as they appeared through the falling snow.

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