Cyclo Sportives

What is a Sportive?

...and why should you try one

Cyclosportives (sometimes spelt 'cyclosportif' and often abbreviated as 'sportive' in the UK) are long distance, organised, mass participation cycle rides, originating on the continent and particularly popular in France & Italy.

Sportives are not races; rather they are challenge events, with targets set for personal achievement, but no winner declared or competitive rewards offered. For many, simply completing the course is the objective of the day, while fitter rides may aim to achieve one of the preset time band targets. In the instance, the emphasis and ethos of the event is for riders to work together for pace, rather than to compete against each other.

On the continent, where cycling is ingrained in the mainstream culture, sportives are large scale events that whole towns and communities turn out to support. Sportives in the UK have enjoyed a huge surge in popularity in the past few years, attracting anything from 250 to over 2000 riders on a single day. Keen cyclists have embraced their atmosphere and accessibility and they are starting to register outside of the cycling community too.

The format of UK Sportives is evolving in it's own direction. A huge range of events are now available. Some organisers are pushing the limits of their events' severity in an attempt to present the hardest sportive they can, while others are less demanding. Experienced riders from Redhill generally know which events are best to ride in - watch out for our updates and the club calendar. And we often share transport to events.

Sportives can have the same popular appeal in cycling as marathon and half marathon events do in running, we are sure you will enjoy riding in these events, which often give a choice of distances from as little as 25 miles to over 100 miles.

To find out more, contact Road Events Secretary, Steve Taylor via our contact page or committee page.


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