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Hi,

I have suspicions that the RideLondon ballot does not provide an equal chance for each entry, i.e., they might positively discriminate against certain combinations of age and sex to make the field more diverse.

Naturally, there is no such information on the website, so I was wondering if anyone in-the-know could save me a phone call?

As an aside, has anyone joined in the course without an official entry? How did that work out for you?

Cheers!

44 comments

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stefv [211 posts] 1 year ago
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Pleasingly, RideLondon replied to me on Twitter:

"Hi there, further info on the ballot will be published by Monday. It's a random ballot. Best wishes, PRL"

So it looks like my suspicions may be unfounded!  36

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Martyn_K [185 posts] 1 year ago
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Although of the 30+ members in my club who entered last years ballot only 10 were female. 9 got entry through the ballot and only 3 males did.

Another club a few miles away had similar results from the 2014 ballot. Does not prove anything but interesting results.

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Wookie [235 posts] 1 year ago
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Of the 15 Members of my Club (9 males and 6 females) that entered the RidleLondon-Surrey100 only 5 got through and they were 4 males and 1 female.
So I’d go with the ballot being random as RideLondon says it is.

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mickcee [70 posts] 1 year ago
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I would like Ridelondon organisers to issue how many places up for grabs in the ballot.

I have been unsuccessful both years and took up a charity place this year, which quite a lot of charities buy quite a lot of places. I heard another cyclist telling a guy next to him in my starting area he had got in the ballot twice and that starting figure will be over 30,000 next year.

be nice to know if 10,000 of those places are not up for grabs in the ballot though

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Leviathan [1988 posts] 1 year ago
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Out of a sample of one male 35+, he got in two years in a row, suspicious.

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djaustin [2 posts] 1 year ago
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I collated nearly 100 entries from our club. If you are female and won a place, congratulations, you tossed a head. If you are male, you rolled a six! The odds ratio for a place was 3:1 for female to male. But selection is random, after adjusting for gender.

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stefv [211 posts] 1 year ago
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djaustin, that's interesting given your sample size. I think I will be entering my wife  1

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farrell [1950 posts] 1 year ago
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mckechan wrote:

I think I will be entering my wife  1

http://static.bips.channel4.com/bips/orig/frankie-howerd-the-lost-tapes/...

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parksey [343 posts] 1 year ago
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mickcee wrote:

I would like Ridelondon organisers to issue how many places up for grabs in the ballot.

I have been unsuccessful both years and took up a charity place this year, which quite a lot of charities buy quite a lot of places.

This is a fair point.

I'm interested in taking part next year but just riding it as a sportive, and so will be entering the ballot. However, some idea of what proportion of the *total* number of places are available in the ballot would be handy, as I assume a good proportion of them are "reserved" for charity entries.

I could have ridden it this year for 2 or 3 different charities but they all wanted pledges in the region of £700-£800... I personally don't think the nature of this ride would be as well regarded by friends and family as other more prominent charity rides for fund-raising purposes, so I reckon I'd still be sticking several hundred quid in from my own pocket to ride it. That makes no sense.

Also, I'm assuming you have to pay the £58 entry fee when you enter the ballot? In that respect, what happens to it if you don't get a place?

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CXR94Di2 [1154 posts] 1 year ago
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30000 entrants, wow. I don't think I'll bother entering. The narrow lanes will be grid locked. There is a point where it becomes over subscribed, a victim of its own success/popularity.

I have done it now got the medal  1

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DrJDog [341 posts] 1 year ago
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parksey wrote:

Also, I'm assuming you have to pay the £58 entry fee when you enter the ballot? In that respect, what happens to it if you don't get a place?

You can choose to let them give your entry fee to charity, or get it back.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 1 year ago
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You don't pay the fee upfront, at least you had the option not to last year.

I'll be in the ballot, with a recumbent test event happening next year. I'll be there  4

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parksey [343 posts] 1 year ago
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Ok, that sounds reasonably encouraging then. Without sounding overly mean-spirited, I'd rather have my entry fee back if I'm not doing the event.

That said, am I right in thinking that if you don't get a place but donate the fee to charity, you get a guaranteed place the following year (albeit subject to payment of the fee again)?

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 1 year ago
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Nope, no guaranteed places anywhere. That is unless you are on a test event....lol

The ONLY want to guarantee you place for 2015 was to differ your place from 2014 and not take part.

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Binky [116 posts] 1 year ago
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That's not fair!

I could understand the ones who take part in it paying, but all those people who paid and got nothing for it, then to do that year after year!

It's as bad as a 'Ponzi Scheme' .

So the money from all the ones who never took part still gets used towards the service of funding the day, paying for police, support and who ever which means the organizers make a profit and people still keep buying into it ?!

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 1 year ago
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NO, those who paid up at the first opening of the ballot, had the choice of 2 outcomes. You get a place or your money goes to charity.

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fatbeggaronabike [815 posts] 1 year ago
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The only downside of this ballot system is that anyone can enter regardless of whether they are capable of doing the route or not (same as London marathon).

Last year I was on hurst road just past Hampton court and there had already been approx 18 retirements and this was in good weather, thats 18 places that could have been given to better more commited cyclists. I hate to think what the attrition rate was this year.

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S13SFC [134 posts] 1 year ago
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30k on the narrow lanes of Surrey would be too much IMHO.

Think we will give it a swerve and just do the closed road rides in Manchester and Cardiff.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 1 year ago
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It isn't 30k of riders on the narrow lanes of Surrey, that is why you are sent off on waves. I don't know what the numbers in each wave were, but you don't just get let loose all at the same time

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CXR94Di2 [1154 posts] 1 year ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

It isn't 30k of riders on the narrow lanes of Surrey, that is why you are sent off on waves. I don't know what the numbers in each wave were, but you don't just get let loose all at the same time

Once I got to the Surrey lanes I had to slow down and go with the flow, which is fine for me, some though who were obviously faster/more determined to keep their average speed up were held up. The more entrants is going to be a problem.

Possible solutions would be

Do away with the professional road race or put that on with sportive and have the pros start first.

Applicants can only ride once they have proven their 100mile time from a previous sportive, then correctly stagger the start.

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Leviathan [1988 posts] 1 year ago
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CXR94Di2 wrote:

Possible solutions would be

Do away with the professional road race or put that on with sportive and have the pros start first.

Applicants can only ride once they have proven their 100mile time from a previous sportive, then correctly stagger the start.

[1.] Nonstarter, pro races finish in the afternoon: TV.
[2.] Elitist rubbish. I had never done 100miles until I did this event. If only 'proven' sportivists are allowed it will increase the average speed and lead to more congestion not less as the field will have spread less by the climbs.

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CXR94Di2 [1154 posts] 1 year ago
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Average speed doesn't necessarily increase but a more accurate time will be given to stagger the start hopefully thinning the field out more evenly. I have only done three 100 mile sportives (all done since April this year). I already knew what time I might achieve to within 30 mins because of my training and planning of doing my first 100 miler. On the Pru I passed so many people in the first half, then met a huge backlog in the Surrey lanes. I slowed down as I wasn't prepared to fight down the side of the lane risking falling off. When the road opened up again I picked up my pace again. Better management is required of staging the start.

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S13SFC [134 posts] 1 year ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

It isn't 30k of riders on the narrow lanes of Surrey, that is why you are sent off on waves. I don't know what the numbers in each wave were, but you don't just get let loose all at the same time

I did it this year and the congestion in the Surrey lanes was awful.

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Martyn_K [185 posts] 1 year ago
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Using the 2014 event as a reference point for congestion on the route is pointless due to the conditions on the day. The flow of riders got very mixed while on the road for several reasons but all due to the weather.

Riders slowed down dramatically to be safe. Many riders stopped at feed stations/ hubs to get some respite from the conditions.
Punctures, and fixing them took longer.

Having said that generally the congestion was not too bad considering the amount of cyclists on the road. Communication and thinking 30 yards ahead is the key.

Ballot entered for 2015

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bashthebox [751 posts] 1 year ago
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True enough. On the 2013 ride the only real congestion point was Leith Hill. This year I went off a little earlier and a lot faster - there was no congestion for me up the road, but as I understand it those who were 30-45 minutes behind encountered an awful lot more.

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sergius [328 posts] 1 year ago
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Thanks for the reminder about entering for 2015 - I hadn't clocked that it opened today. Here's hoping second time lucky!

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Wookie [235 posts] 1 year ago
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The only congestion I was caught in was in Richmond Park and this was caused by a "Broom Wagon" and a Van for the Bicycles. I think there may have been a crash as there was also a Paramedic attending to someone.
Apart from that Newlands Corner was very busy but did not slow me down (I probably couldn’t have gone any slower without falling off anyway).

Ballot entered for 2015.  4

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jollygoodvelo [1422 posts] 1 year ago
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CXR94Di2 wrote:
Gkam84 wrote:

It isn't 30k of riders on the narrow lanes of Surrey, that is why you are sent off on waves. I don't know what the numbers in each wave were, but you don't just get let loose all at the same time

Once I got to the Surrey lanes I had to slow down and go with the flow, which is fine for me, some though who were obviously faster/more determined to keep their average speed up were held up. The more entrants is going to be a problem.

Possible solutions would be

Do away with the professional road race or put that on with sportive and have the pros start first.

Applicants can only ride once they have proven their 100mile time from a previous sportive, then correctly stagger the start.

Or do away with people who think they have a God-given right to go as fast as they please regardless of "the traffic".

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step-hent [722 posts] 1 year ago
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Congestion was fine this year for the early starters. If you're planning a fast ride, make sure you reflect it in your estimated finishing time - the quicker the time you put, the earlier your start time.

The attrition rate this year was pretty low, given the weather. They advertised 23,000 starters and over 20,000 finishers - not bad for an event taking place in the middle of a passing hurricane.

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andycoventry [110 posts] 1 year ago
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I asked this question via twitter when I didn't get a ballot place two years in a row. Their response was:

"The ballot is drawn by computer to ensure the maximum possible number get around the route within the time limit".

Whatever that means........ From what I can gather there is some weighting.

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