Fantasy Cycling 2012 is go!

Get your team ready for the Tour Down Under and a whole season of fantasy racing

by Dave Atkinson   January 6, 2012  

Fantasy Cycling 2012 logo

BOOM! It's back, and better than ever! Get your virtual directeur sportif hat on and delve into a new season of Fantasy Cycling with! There's more races to play, and more chances to win, than ever before...

Click here to go to the new Fantasy Cycling website...

We've been beavering away behind the scenes to get the game ready super early this year, so you'll have a chance to play all the way through from the Tour Down Under to the World Championships. That's nearly ten months of racing, with 11 separate competitions to play. Excited? of course you are.

We've completely re-engineered the game engine to make the game easier to play, and we'll be bringing you some top prizes to play for too over the course of the year - stay tuned for that.

If you haven't played Fantasy Cycling before, it's easy: You pick nine riders, they score points based on how well they do in the races. Easy. You can also make transfers between stages to keep your team tip top. You can set up leagues to play your friends, and if you win competitions or stages along the way you'll get a prize. There's spot prizes too.

Our Fantasy Cycling season runs right through the year, taking in eleven separate competitions:

  •     Tour Down Under 17/1 - 22/1
  •     Paris-Nice 4/3 - 11/3
  •     Spring Classics 17/3 - 22/4
  •     Giro d'Italia 5/5 - 27/5
  •     Criterium du Dauphine 3/6 - 10/6
  •     Tour de France 30/6 - 22/7
  •     Olympics 28/7
  •     Clasica San Sebastian 14/8
  •     Vuelta a Espana 18/8 - 9/9
  •     Il Lombardia 29/9
  •     World Championships 15/10 - 23/10

So that's three grand tours, three week-long tours, the Spring classics, two day races, the Olympics and the World Champs. A bit of everything.

To kick us off we've teamed up with the lovely people at Upgrade Bikes, and they've sent us down a very nice pair of Reynolds Solitude wheels for the winner of the Tour Down Under. There's a blingin' Lezyne track pump in spangly gold for each and every stage winner, and a bunch of other prizes too. It's free to play and fun to be involved. Set up your team today!

To play the Fantasy game you need to be registered on If you're not, click here to register. If you're registered and logged in, the game will create your account the first time you visit the fantasy site.

Click here to go to the new Fantasy Cycling website...

So, what's changed?

If you played last year then you'll be familiar with most of the rules of the game. There are a few changes though, so we'll quickly run through them here.

It's all about the races

This year we're concentrating on each race as a separate, standalone competiton. You'll still get an overall total, and there'll still be an overall prize. But that's more for the glory. It'll most likely be an actual trophy...

There aren't any overlapping competitions

Sorry, it was a faff and people didn't really get it. So we had to choose between the Criterium du Dauphiné and the Tour de Suisse, and the Dauphiné won out.

You can make all your transfers at once

Instead of doing your transfers one by one, this year you can make all your transfers at once. This means you can try out different squads and combinations of riders before making your choice. Once you click commit there's no going back though...

You can have any combination of star riders

We've kept the rider classifications from last year, but this time round your team selection can be more fluid, to take into account the fact that you don't see many GC riders or climbers at some of the races; there aren't any of either riding in the Tour Down Under.

For 2012 you select four star riders and five domestiques for every stage. There's a budget of 150 credits for your team and, like last year, it's a maximum of two riders from one Pro team. So if you want to go for four all-rounders or four sprinters, that's your choice.

You can have extra transfers... but it'll cost you points

Messed up your team and really, REALLY want to make three transfers when there's only two available? Now you can. It's going to cost you though, 20 points per transfer off your stage total. They'll be deducted when the stage scores are calculated. There's more points available for a stage win though, so you never know - it could pay off...

You can roll your transfers over

If you want to save your transfers up and make lots of changes on one day, you can roll up to two transfers over from the previous stage. They're only available for the next stage though; after that you lose them.

Bigger scores for stage wins and breakaways

For 2012 you'll be getting more points for stage wins. 35 is the maximum for a stage win in a multi-day race, and for a one-day race it's 100 points for the first man over the line. It's still the top 20 that score on the finish line, so the margin between coming first and, say, fifth is greatly increased. Points for jerseys will remain the same, and breakaway points (break bonuses, intermediate sprints and climbs) will increase. So there's less emphasis on filling your squad with the jersey wearers, and more on picking the day's major players.

Lanterne Rouge becomes last man home

This year your tryer points will go to the man who's dead last on the stage, not the guy filling last place in the GC.

Rider values are set for the season

There was lots of to-ing and fro-ing about this one, but in the end we decided that it's better to set the rider values at the start of the season and stick with them. That way it's still about your skill in picking the right team, but people who join the game later on in the season aren't at a disadvantage. It inevitably means that by the Tour de France, some people will be looking like a bargain and others rather overpriced. But then, if you've been playing from the start you'll be more aware of that, eh...

You can make your leagues private

You can choose whether you want your leagues to be public or private. If they're public they'll be listed on the leagues page and anyone can join them. If they're private you'll need to tell your friends and approve them when they join.

That's about it, we think. Because we've been up against a tight deadline there's some aspects of the game that are scheduled to, erm, come online slightly later in the year. There will be a mobile-friendly version of the game, available from the Spring Classics competition, and full rider and user stats (with funky graphs) should be ready for the Paris-Nice.

Click here to go to the new Fantasy Cycling website...

14 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Cool! can't wait!

I have another question though?

Is there prizes/a league for us who want to stick with 11 riders through the whole year?

Don't want to build my team before I know that! Tongue

seabass89's picture

posted by seabass89 [235 posts]
6th January 2012 - 16:20


you're going to have 11 riders?


Dave Atkinson's picture

posted by Dave Atkinson [7597 posts]
6th January 2012 - 16:26

1 Like

I look forward to beating Dave again.

posted by KMcD [27 posts]
6th January 2012 - 16:31


dave_atkinson wrote:
you're going to have 11 riders?


Haha! I've been playing fantasy football.. A bit confused!

But back to the question.. Is there still a league if I pick 9 riders and stick with them through the season?

seabass89's picture

posted by seabass89 [235 posts]
6th January 2012 - 16:50

1 Like

Can you roll over 2 transfers and still have 3 transfers for that day (with the hit) to make a max. of 5 transfers in one day?

I like most of the changes, although it's going to make it more difficult I think, especially the change about Lanterne Rouge.

Those wheels are just what I need so I'm going to start the proper research tonight. Had a quick look at the Tour Down Under site yesterday to see who was riding!

posted by Alan Tullett [1487 posts]
6th January 2012 - 16:58


Love the changes. It's apparent you guys were listening to all our cribs over the last season!

Like the changes to scoring too, should make it harder for 'safe' players like me to score Smile


rbx's picture

posted by rbx [243 posts]
6th January 2012 - 20:40

1 Like

I can not pick any GC or climbers? it doesn't even show up when i filter the riders.

posted by Vidal [32 posts]
6th January 2012 - 21:13

1 Like

Wow great new layout - very cool!

posted by Stefan [58 posts]
6th January 2012 - 22:26

1 Like

Vidal wrote:
I can not pick any GC or climbers? it doesn't even show up when i filter the riders.

there aren't any riding in the tour down under. it's all sprinters and all rounders...

Dave Atkinson's picture

posted by Dave Atkinson [7597 posts]
6th January 2012 - 23:37

1 Like

oh ok thanks....

posted by Vidal [32 posts]
7th January 2012 - 4:57

1 Like

Excellent re-gig of a great game and a nice new layout as well Looking forward to hours of headaches over team selection, which like my winter training rides is pointless as I never achieve anything of the back of it, but addiction is what it is. Sadly glad to see the back of the Lanterne Rouge points banker, how will I cope points wise?


posted by lushmiester [156 posts]
7th January 2012 - 12:56


seabass89 wrote:
But back to the question.. Is there still a league if I pick 9 riders and stick with them through the season?

if you like Smile

Dave Atkinson's picture

posted by Dave Atkinson [7597 posts]
7th January 2012 - 14:30


Awesome. Looking forward to participating from the very beginning, as didn't get involved until TDF last time around. Love the new design - much more user-friendly.

posted by Rvizzle [99 posts]
7th January 2012 - 19:11

1 Like

"Rider values are set for the season"

I'm very enthusiastic to get under way with the season (my first one playing so will see how good my developing knowledge of cycling really is)

It might only be the economist in me, but I can't help but think that keeping rider values set for the season might not be a great idea.

What you're creating is a market for riders, but a market where the prices are fixed isn't going to function well. What will happen is increasingly you will constrain the options that players have and all our team selections will start to converge ( which is a bad outcome in my view). If you have a price change mechanism, then you keep options open because poorly performing riders become more affordable - people might decide they have underperformed to date and are worth a punt at a low price, but that can't happen in your system. In your system underperforming riders become clearly "overpriced" quickly and stay that way so for the majority of buyers don't have any reason to go for them. Thus your actual active market becomes restricted to only those riders who are over performing at any given time - creating very similar rosters.

A secondary aspect of a price change mechanism is that those players who invest wisely at the start will see the value of their investment increase, creating a team that can be sold for a bigger cash price than when they started. (perhaps this is what you were trying to avoid, as it could be seen to favour those who join the game at the start, over those who join say in the middle ) I would say that yes, this does create a reward for playing the game well, but you can also loose value, and these pay offs or losses are equally available whenever you start. So I don't think in the round its unfair. Also your change to make it about the races not the season, and the natural flow of the cycling season (with different people being successful in different conditions at different times) mitigates the discriminatory effects towards late starters.

This is just a prediction - it'll be interesting to see what actually happens! Nerd

posted by munchbunch [3 posts]
16th January 2012 - 20:53