|MORE SPORTIVES AND CHARITY RIDES THAN EVER...
Over the past few years we have seen a huge increase in the number of these events being organised - a real Sportive explosion.
Almost every weekend from early spring through to late autumn you will have a choice of various sportives or charity rides that you can sign up for and ride.
The little booklet shown in the photo above lists over 200 sportives that you can choose from and that is just a few of the events that are actually being organised.
Situated as I am on the beautiful Dorset Jurassic coast we have no end of these rides in this and the surrounding area....
Ride to the Pies.....New Forest Spring Sportive.....The Joker....Jurassic Beast....Bournemouth Sportive to name just a few.
Over the past few years I have ridden in a number of these events but Jeff's comments on the cost of these type of rides got me thinking.....always a dangerous thing for me to do.
The rides that I have mentioned above are ridden over routes that I can ride any day of the week..and do....so why would I want to pay anything up to £50 to ride on roads that I ride on for free?
What do I actually get for my entry fee?
Well I get to wear a pin on number...the use of a timing device....a feed stop or two and a broom wagon and the pleasure of riding in a large group.
I might even get a medal or a Tee shirt for completing the ride.
Let's look at each item......
I don't really need to wear a number....my Garmin seems to be a pretty accurate timer....I have no problem riding a hundred miles with my own energy bars and energy drink and a broom wagon is nice but a phone call could sort things if I ever have a major problem.
As for the medal or Tee shirt....well like the pin on number these are things that I don't really need.
That brings me to the 'pleasure' of riding in a large group....my own experience on this is that it creates it's own problems.
A lot of the riders can be very inexperienced in group riding and seem completely unaware of the normal courtesy rules and behaviour that you might expect on a weekly club run.
Having said all this, these sportives can be a fun experience and I always try to build one or two of these events into my cycling calendar even though I feel they are an expensive way of 'going for a ride'.
As far as the charity events go.....
Well JD and I have always arranged at least one charity ride each year....however we prefer to organize our own charity rides such as our ROCK2UK ride last September and our upcoming EDINBURGH 2 PORTSMOUTH ride which we will be undertaking later this month.
When I look back on my cycling over the years...the rides that come to mind as the most enjoyable, are those that I have set up and organised myself and ridden with friends........
and there was no entry fee required for those........