Surrey Hills Road Race Festival announced on Olympic Road Race weekend, 27-29 July

Come and see the Olympic road race, come and see a load of cool bike stuff, come and see us!

by Dave Atkinson   May 4, 2012  

Box Hill Olympic Test Event © National Trust : David Levenson

With the Olympic organising committee LOCOG estimating that there will be up to 200,000 people heading down to Surrey to watch the Olympic Road Races on the opening weekend of the games, road.cc are teaming up with Surrey Hills AONB to bring you the Surrey Hills Road Race festival and cycling expo on the weekend of 27-29 July.

Based at Denbies Vineyard, the festival is right next to the route of the road race as it heads up the A24 ahead of the Box Hill loop, so you'll be able to watch the riders in the flesh. But it's also an official BBC Live Site, which means the nation's broadcaster will be setting up one of their big screens to relay the whole race to the festival goers. You could catch the early stages on the big telly, then wander up to the Box Hill loop to see the riders battling for position, then come back to see the finish transmitted live. Perfect.

On top of the race action there'll also be an expo on site featuring some of the biggest brands in cycling, as well as a whole bunch of homegrown talent from around the UK. So as well as getting to watch the big race live and on the big screen, you'll be able to feast your eyes on plenty of shiny bikes and kit. You never know, you might even get a sneak peek at some 2013 stuff... If you're planning to ride to the festival there will be secure bike parking on site. The A24 is closed to cars all weekend but the festival is within easy walking distance of Dorking and West Humble stations and Box Hill, and there's cycle track access too.

The Festival is free to enter, and will be running all weekend, starting on Friday night when the opening ceremony will be showing on the big screen. You'll be able to sample the best of Surrey’s local food and drink as well, which should keep you going through a long day of wandering about looking at flash bikes and sitting on the grass watching telly. Both the mens and ladies road races will be screened live in their entirety. We're lining up lots of other cycling-related entertainment to amuse you throughout the weekend too; we'll let you know what's happening as soon as we do!

14 user comments

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bikes, booze and battles, what more could a person want Big Grin

posted by twist305 [23 posts]
4th May 2012 - 13:35

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Is it open to just Brits or are they letting Johnny foreigners join in, or will they be turned away at Box Hill? Wink

posted by Ducci [54 posts]
4th May 2012 - 14:06

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When you say "festival" it makes me think, Mud, Booze and Musi........bikes Devil

But no festival would be complete without a camp site?? I aint traipsing down all that way to pay top dollar for a hotel thats bumped its prices up 10 fold. I'm quite happy with my tent Wink

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posted by Gkam84 [8645 posts]
4th May 2012 - 14:19

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When you say "secure bike parking" what do you mean?
Do you mean someone is actually guarding them or they are locked in a secure building? Otherwise its not really secure?

posted by pmr [160 posts]
4th May 2012 - 15:25

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yeah but you still need tickets to go and see the race on box hill - surely the festival is only relevant to people who have secured tickets. the whole Olympic thing is the very antithesis of what road racing is all about - this is cycling stripped of all its romance and history, it's relationship with the fans and its chaos and anarchy. The Olmpics is a glorified kermesse for the benefit of coca cola and McDonalds and Nike and while I hope we get a British winner and he/she makes a nice amount of money out of it, I would quite frankly rather see Voeckler put the cat amongst the pigeons at the tour than a mini peloton of superstars mixed with Eritreans/Erik the Eel or his cycling equivalent hanging out the back of the peloton as they go through the neutralised zone and Richmond Park. Dull.

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posted by theclaw [75 posts]
4th May 2012 - 15:32

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what are the dates?

posted by fennesz [81 posts]
4th May 2012 - 15:41

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theclaw wrote:
yeah but you still need tickets to go and see the race on box hill - surely the festival is only relevant to people who have secured tickets. the whole Olympic thing is the very antithesis of what road racing is all about - this is cycling stripped of all its romance and history, it's relationship with the fans and its chaos and anarchy. The Olmpics is a glorified kermesse for the benefit of coca cola and McDonalds and Nike and while I hope we get a British winner and he/she makes a nice amount of money out of it, I would quite frankly rather see Voeckler put the cat amongst the pigeons at the tour than a mini peloton of superstars mixed with Eritreans/Erik the Eel or his cycling equivalent hanging out the back of the peloton as they go through the neutralised zone and Richmond Park. Dull.

you need tickets to go in the ticketed section of Box Hill but there's plenty of other places to watch on the loop. so no, it's not just of interest to those people. in fact it's of less interest to them, since they'll be wanting to stay in the ticketed bit to keep their places, no doubt.

I'm sure there's plenty of people who'd rather see the tour, but the tour isn't going through surrey this summer. as to the olympics being 'the antithesis of road racing' because it's linked with sponsorship deals, you might want to have a think about why the Grand Tours started. Professional road racing has always been an advert for something, right from its very inception.

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7233 posts]
4th May 2012 - 15:49

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fennesz wrote:
what are the dates?

27-29 July. I've added it in to the story too. Probably would have been an idea to have it there from the start, eh Smile

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7233 posts]
4th May 2012 - 15:52

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dave_atkinson wrote:
theclaw wrote:
yeah but you still need tickets to go and see the race on box hill - surely the festival is only relevant to people who have secured tickets. the whole Olympic thing is the very antithesis of what road racing is all about - this is cycling stripped of all its romance and history, it's relationship with the fans and its chaos and anarchy. The Olmpics is a glorified kermesse for the benefit of coca cola and McDonalds and Nike and while I hope we get a British winner and he/she makes a nice amount of money out of it, I would quite frankly rather see Voeckler put the cat amongst the pigeons at the tour than a mini peloton of superstars mixed with Eritreans/Erik the Eel or his cycling equivalent hanging out the back of the peloton as they go through the neutralised zone and Richmond Park. Dull.

you need tickets to go in the ticketed section of Box Hill but there's plenty of other places to watch on the loop. so no, it's not just of interest to those people. in fact it's of less interest to them, since they'll be wanting to stay in the ticketed bit to keep their places, no doubt.

I'm sure there's plenty of people who'd rather see the tour, but the tour isn't going through surrey this summer. as to the olympics being 'the antithesis of road racing' because it's linked with sponsorship deals, you might want to have a think about why the Grand Tours started. Professional road racing has always been an advert for something, right from its very inception.

thanks for that I didn't realise there were other places on the loop that were free.

I stand by this second bit - it really is the antithesis of road cycling - not just because it is linked to giant global corporations. Paid entrance, 5-man teams, laps around Richmond Park (sorry I mean Box Hill)... of course I don't deny that I will be turning up. And that I have a pair of Nike trainers and sometimes eat in McDonalds. But it's still wrong - luckily the Giro is starting tomorrow and we might have some mountains and hotel raids to watch.

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posted by theclaw [75 posts]
4th May 2012 - 16:08

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Seems to be 3 big events planned for the area. The Box Hill Festival of Cycling is also on, and I've heard of a camping expo. All good news for us customers!

I want to be inside the lap they do quite a few times - so will make the Box Hill Featival my main 'base', but looking forward to exploring them all! I'm also a Rob Hayles fan - so that also swings it for me.

Nothing like choice though!

posted by Simon Fisher [7 posts]
4th May 2012 - 16:58

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Cool will Visit Cool

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posted by Davetillyer [18 posts]
4th May 2012 - 20:48

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theclaw wrote:
I stand by this second bit - it really is the antithesis of road cycling - not just because it is linked to giant global corporations. Paid entrance, 5-man teams, laps around Richmond Park (sorry I mean Box Hill)...

Eh? Only part of the course has ticketed entrance. I agree wholeheartedly that that sucks, but it hardly makes it the antithesis of road racing. Road races also regularly have loops in them - the world championship being the obvious major annual example. As for 5 man teams, it will shake up the tactics a bit, but it's hardly a revolution! You'll still have some teams trying to control it, and some strong riders trying to break away before the finale. No-one will be certain that the teams can control it, no-one really knows whether the sprinters can handle 9 laps of the loop. All in all, it sounds a lot like a recipe for a good road race.

Needless to say, I'll be there. Any chance of a bit more info on the secure parking?

posted by step-hent [644 posts]
8th May 2012 - 14:37

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step-hent wrote:

Needless to say, I'll be there. Any chance of a bit more info on the secure parking?

we'll be posting full details soon

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7233 posts]
8th May 2012 - 15:58

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There is no big screen at Denbies for the opening ceremony, only Saturday and Sunday. Unfortunately this mid-leading article has left us scrabbling round for a place to watch tonight.

posted by miche [1 posts]
27th July 2012 - 16:44

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