I live in South East England but in three weeks I will start a tour of France that will include all the climbs in the 2006 tour.
I know these cols will be difficult but I do not know how difficult compared to the training I can do in the UK. So far the 2 most taxing trials I have done have been to: > Ride up and down the steepest hill around here (which goes up 107m in 880m so 12.1%) 5 times in a row. I climbed at around 10kph and my HR was 160-165 (I am 47 years old & weigh 74kg). > Spend a weekend doing some long rides in Wales which has a lot of short steep hills. I did 135km and 1800m of climbing on day 1 and 190km and 3000m of climbing day 2, boths days including short climbs over 20%. I deliberately kept things easy in terms of speed so my average was only 20kph but correspondingly my average HR was only 109bpm with a max of 162 (and only for 1 minute then)
Is it all possible to say based on this how I will get on, say, the Marie-Blanque?
If you're willing to climb MarieBlanque take a look at http://www.quebrantahuesos.com/. It's the most famous cyclochallenge in Spain. 205Km with Somport-MarieBlanque-Portalet. Around 7000 riders last year. Enjoy on 23rd of June.