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Charge your engine for a unique around the clock cycling challenge

We’re always looking for interesting new challenges here at road.cc and the Le Mans 24 hour endurance cyclo-sportive has us raising a collective eyebrow.. Entry for the 2013 event has just been opened and we’re very tempted. Very.

Put simply, it’s a 24 hour cycling team relay on the famous Le Mans Bugatti Circuit circuit. It’s more used to motor cars racing at over 200 mph but on the weekend of 24/25 August over 2,500 cyclists will descend on the circuit for a weekend of racing at slightly slower speeds.

You can ride it solo on your own (if you’re mad) or in pairs or teams up to eight people. It’s tun in partnership with Le Mans Sarthe Vélo (MSV) cycling association and with the support of the French Cycling Federation (FFC).

The world famous track was built in 1966 and is only 55 minutes from Paris and 1h30 from Roissy CDG Airport by train, so it’s easy to get to. For the event the entire track will be floodlight and the course is 4.18km in length.

Registrations are open from the 16th of November until the 22nd of July. Registration fees depend on the number of contestants and on when registration is completed. It costs upwards from 275 Euros. More details at www.24heuresvelo.fr. And if you register before 28 February you can get a 9% discount on the entry price.

To get you interested, the organisers have just released this teaser video. Have a watch:

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.

9 comments

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 3 years ago
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Off to find out if its uprights only.....I saw velomobiles in the pits, but only upright on the track

EDIT, It seems if you have a bike, you can ride there

http://www.24heuresvelo.fr/clients/velo24/upload/images/_zoom/x-top-dsc_...

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robdaykin (not verified) [368 posts] 3 years ago
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Anyone else interested in putting a team together? Or need another rider? Let me know if you are.

BTW Gkam, the technical rules on http://www.24heuresvelo.fr/en/CONTESTANT-INFORMATION-61.htm seem to exclude recumbents. Sorry. That image seems to contradict them though.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 3 years ago
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Strange, there are a few pictures of recumbents there. Oh well, rules me out then once I get mine.

I'd like to know what a "stuffed stem" is though.....

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hoski [81 posts] 3 years ago
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No fixed gear bikes allowed?  2 Seems a little unfair... I can see why no track bikes, but a fixed gear road bike with two brakes, lovingly maintained... ?

What about SS?

And according to the rules a pair can't be made up of two women? A mighty wtf to that...

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graham_f [186 posts] 3 years ago
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I rode it a couple of years ago, and it's a fantastic event. Would recommend it to anyone who wants to do something a bit different. Very inclusive for all standards of rider - those at the head of the race take it very seriously, but everyone made to feel welcome, and being a short loop there's always other riders around even if you're not going as fast of them. It was the first time I'd had the experience of riding at speed in a large group, which was an absolute blast.

Haven't watched the video, but I seem to recall they had a session of an hour or two where the track was open for everyone to ride (a lot of people had family and friends there supporting them) and there were some more unusual bikes around then, which probably explains the recumbents.

EDIT: just seen the photo with the recumbent in and yes, that looks much more like the open track session rather than the race itself.

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qwerky [184 posts] 3 years ago
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Have been going down there to watch the 24h du Mans sports car race for a few years now. You can drive the course beforehand, but wow would love to cycle it!

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CraigS [129 posts] 3 years ago
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I don't see the attraction of race circuits myself, a bit like as a driver I wouldn't be that fussed about going up Box Hill!

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graham_f [186 posts] 3 years ago
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qwerky wrote:

Have been going down there to watch the 24h du Mans sports car race for a few years now. You can drive the course beforehand, but wow would love to cycle it!

The bike race is held on the Bugatti circuit, which is a permanent motor racing track of about 2.5 miles, rather than the 9ish mile course of the car race which includes part of the Bugatti circuit but mostly closed public roads.

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jollygoodvelo [1419 posts] 3 years ago
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Sounds fantastic, I love the idea of these closed-circuit rides. Perfect tarmac, no silly gradients, just you, your bike and the challenge.

I've done a map of it here if anyone's interested: http://ridewithgps.com/routes/1975011 note that as above it's the Bugatti circuit NOT the full 9-mile part-public-road circuit they use for the car 24-hour race.

Late August... plenty of time to get into shape too.