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2022 Eroica Britannia cancelled due to “logistical and supply chain challenges”

The retro cycling festival, which has not been held since 2019, was scheduled to take place in early August at its new home of Goodwood

The 2022 edition of the Eroica Britannia, the UK version of the Tuscan retro cycling festival, has been postponed due to what the event’s organisers have described as “a number of logistical and supply chain challenges”.

First held in the Peak District in 2014, the weekend-long vintage bike festival was set to return in August, following a three-year coronavirus interlude, at its new home of Goodwood, West Sussex, the iconic motor racing venue which also played host to the 1982 UCI road world championships, won by Britain’s Mandy Jones and the Italian “gunshot of Goodwood” Giuseppe Saronni.

As well as its showpiece Sunday rides, ranging from 20 to 100-mile routes – and all on pre-1987 equipment – the weekend was also expected to feature music, local food and drink, family track rides, and a visit from Jones and Sarroni to reminisce about their rainbow-jersey winning heroics.

> Vintage bikes and Sir Chris Hoy on coffee duty — we ride Eroica Britannia's new route 

However, despite everything seeming in order when we attended the test event earlier this year (complete with sparkling wine lunches and flat whites made by Sir Chris Hoy himself), this morning it was confirmed by the Eroica Britannia organisers that the festival will not be taking place in August 2022.

“It is with great sadness that Eroica Britannia has been postponed until 2023,” the organisers said in a statement.

“The event was due to take place on 6-7 August 2022, but a number of logistical and supply chain challenges have made it very difficult to deliver the world-class event we’ve all been looking forward to.

“Like you, the whole team at Goodwood are disappointed that the event won’t be happening this summer.

“We’d like to thank you for supporting the event’s move from the Peak District and we look forward to welcoming you, the cycling community and our partners to West Sussex and the South Downs National Park next year, to celebrate all things cycling at Goodwood. Stay tuned for future announcements about the 2023 event.”

> Eroica Britannia switches to Goodwood from next year and will include motor racing venue’s iconic hill climb 

The organisers also confirmed that anyone who had purchased tickets for August’s event will receive an email later today with further information.

The Eroica’s sudden cancellation has come as something of a shock to its prospective, vintage bike-loving participants.

Less than two weeks ago, the organisers held a competition to win two non-riding tickets to the festival, while representatives from Goodwood and several Eroica riders – on board an array of 1950s bikes – took part in the Platinum Jubilee Pageant in London on Sunday 5 June.

With the organisers adamant that the event will return to the South Downs in 2023, hopefully our man Dan will have learned how to use downtube shifters by then…

Ryan joined road.cc in December 2021 and since then has kept the site’s readers and listeners informed and enthralled (well at least occasionally) on news, the live blog, and the road.cc Podcast. After boarding a wrong bus at the world championships and ruining a good pair of jeans at the cyclocross, he now serves as road.cc’s senior news writer. Before his foray into cycling journalism, he wallowed in the equally pitiless world of academia, where he wrote a book about Victorian politics and droned on about cycling and bikes to classes of bored students (while taking every chance he could get to talk about cycling in print or on the radio). He can be found riding his bike very slowly around the narrow, scenic country lanes of Co. Down.

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7 comments

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Owd Big 'Ead | 1 year ago
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One can only imagine that sticking it almost on the South coast has resulted in the many riders from the four corners of the UK that have supported it in the past thinking that it's now an event for the London set and Home Counties.

It's over 200 miles south of it's previous home, a not insignificant 400 miles extra for anyone travelling from anywhere north of Sheffield.

What's the saying? If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

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EM69 replied to Owd Big 'Ead | 1 year ago
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Totally agree with the comment on the move, it's previous venue was perfect being virtually in the middle of the country. 

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John Stevenson replied to EM69 | 1 year ago
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EM69 wrote:

Totally agree with the comment on the move, it's previous venue was perfect being virtually in the middle of the country. 

Except that people generally don't travel more than about 50 miles to go to shows and events*, so if you're putting on something like this, you want to be in a highly populous area - like the south-east of England.

The move to Goodwood appears to have been combined with a big increase in price. I'm willing to bet that was the real problem. If you want to run a small-music-festival scale event at a large venue, you end up charging small-music-festival prices and cyclists don't seem willing to pay that.

*Yes, I know some people are willing to traipse across the country for bike events, but the majority aren't, and you can't rely on that dedicated minority

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sean1 replied to John Stevenson | 1 year ago
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I attended two earlier editions of Eroica Brittania.  I travelled about 150 miles for it and camped the weekend.  It was a great event. A small festival built around retro bikes and retro vibes in general.

I imagine the Goodwood Eroica is cancelled due to poor ticket sales.  Maybe the novelty for retro has worn off.  (I didn't plan to go this year).  Also the transfer of the Eroica Brittania brand to Goodwood itself seemed more of a money making exercise and less about a grass roots bike fesitval.

Moving to Sussex will definitely change the catchment area.  But the South East is heavily populated so it should be OK.

I put it down to expensive tickets and a diminishing interest in retro bikes.  Gravel is the current on-trend bike fad.  I am doing GritFest this weekend.  1

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Kendalred replied to Owd Big 'Ead | 1 year ago
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I agree that moving this so far away from it's previous venue makes it unviable for many riders from Scotland, the North and Midlands - But there's nothing to suggest the cancellation is due to a lack of interest? 

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John Stevenson replied to Kendalred | 1 year ago
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Kendalred wrote:

But there's nothing to suggest the cancellation is due to a lack of interest?

Call me cynical but maybe there's a "supply chain issue" finding enough people willing to stump up £38 for a day at a cycling festival.

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Awavey replied to John Stevenson | 1 year ago
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You've seen the cost of sportives right ? Or even say Rouleur live as a comparison.

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