Interest reflects cyclosportive boom as organisers plan second event for later in the year

Next year’s London-Paris bike ride has sold out in less than 24 hours, prompting organisers to start planning a second long-distance event on the Continent for later in 2010.

Registration for the event, to be held between 24 and 27 June, opened on Monday, and event director Sven Thiele said: “The web traffic was phenomenal. We thought it would take a month for the 350 places to be taken but we sold out in just 20 hours.”

As we reported on Friday, Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Romero and ex-pro Magnus Bäckstedt will be among those tackling the event, considered the blue riband of cyclosportives and featuring a police motorcycle escort and rolling road closures to give riders a taste of the true stage race experience.

And they’ll be joined on the three-day, 550km journey – which is followed by a rest day in the French capital – by riders not just from the UK and Europe but also from as far afield as the US, Australia and Hong Kong.

Thiele said, “I believe the huge level of interest in London-Paris 2010 indicates just how fast cyclosportive riding is expanding. The level of enthusiasm is unprecedented in our experience and I think we are well into a boom in cyclosportive riding.”

His marketing and events business, HotChillee, will announce details of the second event, to be held next September in France, in the New Year.

A reserve list is open for London-Paris 2010 for anyone who was too late to claim their place, and you can register for that at www.londres-paris.com.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.