Cycling has enjoyed a massive boom in popularity in recent years, with many people inspired to take up the activity after witnessing the exploits of Great Britain’s numerous successful Olympic athletes.
Amateur cyclists are able to access hundreds of sportive events that follow a pre-set route and these are a great way to see Britain at its best.
Read on for our top four recommendations of cycling events worth checking out this summer.
Isle of Wight Randonnee – Sunday, May 6 – Isle of Wight
Ride on the roads that the Lonely Planet called ‘the best place in the world to cycle‘.
This route can be followed all year round thanks to the blue and white signs at key junctions, but the event itself provides checkpoints, feed stations and plenty of other riders.
The event sees riders heading in a clockwise direction around the Isle of Wight.
A choice of two distances ñ 55km and the full 100km ñ should appeal to a wide range of riders, with route variation depending on start location and willingness to take on gravel tracks.
Lincoln Grand Prix Sportive – Saturday, May 12 – Lincoln and the Lincolnshire lanes
A rolling route around the Lincolnshire countryside carries a sharp sting in its tail in the form of Michaelgate.
The cobbled climb, which tops out at over 20 percent, will catch out anyone who hasn’t kept enough in the tank over the rest of the ride.
Stick around to watch the best domestic professional riders take on the Lincoln Grand Prix races. If their efforts inspire you, use the Casino Offer from Virgin to boost your budget to invest in a brand new bicycle.
Wiggle County Durham Dynamo – Sunday, May 13 – Darlington, County Durham
This ride takes cyclists from Darlington into the countryside of County Durham. As the route reaches the North Pennines, riders will be tested by the climbs, but also rewarded with the views.
A recent addition to the calendar, this sportive is ideal for anyone wanting to explore this fantastic part of the country, and is worth the journey for those from further afield.
Sodbury Sportive – Sunday, August 5 – Chipping Sodbury, South Gloucestershire
The Saddleback Sodbury Sportive starts and finishes in Chipping Sodbury, near Yate.
A friendly and welcoming event run by the local Rotary Club and staffed entirely by volunteers, this is a fantastic sportive in a stunning part of the world.
The route is made all the better by marked Strava segments which add a hint of competitiveness to the ride.
With homemade sandwiches at the feed stations and a hot meal for every rider at the finish, this an all-round great sportive.