Fitz’s Challenge was first held in 1989 with just thirty-seven riders. Now, more than three decades later, more than 1200 people come together every year on the last Sunday in October to tackle the hills of this legendary event in the spectacular Brindabella Ranges and Namadgi National Park in the ACT.
Fitz’s is a personal challenge event – not a race. With seven rides of varying distances, there’s something to test every rider from the eager novice to the seasoned climber. While all five rides are known for their tough hills, only the longer distances ask riders to tackle the legendary Fitz’s Hill, the epic climb after which the event is named.
Many riders start their Fitz’s journey by testing themselves on the hills of the 50 km and the 105 km events – tough but achievable rides for the keen cyclist looking for a personal challenge. The bravest of those return to tackle the gruelling Fitz’s Hill – the highlight of the 165 km and longer rides.
While only the hardiest of riders can claim to have conquered the legendary Fitz’s Hill, it still doesn’t come close to the challenge that children with cancer and their families face day in and day out. Fitz’s Challenge is proud to have supported The Kids’ Cancer Project since 2009 by assisting the organisation to raise much-needed funds for research projects.
Unfortunately, the legendary Fitz’s Challenge will not go ahead in 2020.
With growing uncertainly around new COVID-19 outbreaks, the potential for increased restrictions, and overall concerns for the safety of our riders and volunteers; the Pedal Power Board have regretfully concluded that the event is untenable this year.
The Fitz’s Challenge is Australia’s toughest hill climbing event. Over the last 31 years, tens of thousands of riders have come to test themselves in Canberra’s beautiful Brindabellas. For many, Fitz’s Challenge has become the essential motivation to kick off our post-winter training. Panting across Fitz’s finish line is a highpoint of every cycling year.
For Pedal Power’s organisers and many volunteers, Fitz’s is an opportunity to connect and support Canberra’s cycling community, and to give back to the sport we love. We are also gutted.
Please be assured that Fitz’s Challenge will be back bigger and better next year. In the meantime, keep riding and keep safe. We look forward to seeing you in 2021.
Do you need a new challenge?
Australia's toughest hill climbing event is not for the faint-hearted.