Dates announced for '09 Gore Bike Wear Road Sportive Series
Three round sportive series starts in July - entry open now

The three round Gore Bike Wear Road Sportive Series (bit of a mouthful that) which launched last year is back again for 2009 with another series of big rides around the UK's celtic fringe.

The rides announced today included the choice of 80-100 mile Classic routes, or 40-50 mile Standard ones. The Scottish ride also has a 120 mile Extreme route.

1st round – 4th July 2009 in Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales
2nd round – 1st August 2009 in Selkirk, Scotland (featuring the ‘extreme’ loop)
3rd round – 19th September 2009 in Ruthin, Wales

Entry is now open. To enter online or download an entry form head over to www.gorebikewearsportives.com. The site has all the event and location details, lots of tips and advice, course distributions and course maps as well as downloadable entry forms and online entry.

The organisers of this year's series reckon they have put together the most fantastic 80-100mile (‘classic’) road challenges taking in the best road climbs that Wales and the Scottish Borders have to offer. For those who don't want to go quite that far there are also 40-50mile (‘standard’) options on all the rides. The idea is to open them up to a wide range of riders and abilities. With three locations to choose from and with all together 7 courses on offer sportive riders off all abilities should be able to find a suitable challenge.

The GORE BIKE WEAR Road Sportive Series ’09 (phew!) rides are one loop events with the start and finish positioned in the same location as the event village, registration and event camping. The start will open at 8am on Saturday and will stay open for approximately 1 hour to give everybody the chance to have a relaxing start to their ride at the time of their choosing.

The courses are fully marked but just in case anything happens to the roadside marking every rider will get a small ‘backup map’. Energy food sponsor High5 will be on hand around the course with energy drinks, bars, and gels as well as with bananas and water. Alongside the energy backup, mechanics will be out on the course too to help everybody with any technical problems.

Each ride costs £25 to enter and that covers:
Ride entry – 40/ 50 mile ‘Standard’, 80 / 100 mile ‘Classic’ sportive or 120 mile ‘Extreme’ Sportive
After ride’ food
Feed and service stations
All the camping – Friday to Monday
Parking facilities
Finishing prize
Spot prizes
Option to do Mountain Bike skills and riding tuition (check the marathon website for suitable times).

Try some crossover MTB action…

The campsite is open from Friday to Monday, so what to do with the rest of your time? Well the organisers hope you might want to have a go at one of the Merida Bikes MTB Marathon series rides which take place on the Sunday based at the same location – they're obviously hoping too that some of the mountain bikers will use the sportive ride as a proper warm up for hitting the dirt on Sunday.

So you can make it a proper weekend – in fact the organisers would positively encourage you to bring family and friends along as well. You won't have to rought it, showers and toilets are going to be available over the whole weekend – all part of the entry fee.

Fur further details on the Merida Bikes MTB Marathon Series 2009 which runs parallel to the road sportive events please go to www.mtb-marathon.co.uk.

Plucked from the obscurity of his London commute back in the mid-Nineties to live in Bath and edit bike mags our man made the jump to the interweb back in 2006 as launch editor of a large cycling website somewhat confusingly named after a piece of navigational equipment. He came up with the idea for road.cc mainly to avoid being told what to do… Oh dear, issues there then. Tony tries to ride his bike every day and if he doesn't he gets grumpy, he likes carbon, but owns steel, and wants titanium. When not on his bike or eating cake Tony spends his time looking for new ways to annoy the road.cc team. He's remarkably good at it.