Posted Wednesday 28th January 2015 –
Cyclists are gearing up for entries opening for Norfolk Broads most popular road cycling event – The Tour de Broads Festival. The cycle challenge, which will take place around the Norfolk Broads on August 23, 2015, completely sold out last year and over 2,000 riders are expected this year.
The popular event, sponsored by Richardson’s Boating Holidays and Pedal Revolution is organised and run by Revolution Events which is part of the community interest company ActivatingCiC. Cycling is now the UK’s fastest growing sport and the UK now has nearly 9million cyclists. Cycle Sportive rides are the cycling equivalent of fun runs/half marathons and marathons depending on their distance and are rapidly gaining popularity with regular cyclists and attracting new riders into the sport for the first time.
Held at Strumpshaw Hall near Norwich, three routes are available for riders of different abilities to challenge themselves, 3 miles, 40 miles and 70 miles. The Epic Ride takes in 70 miles of the Broadland and North Norfolk area, giving you the chance to ride the tranquil and beautiful settings of the Norfolk Broads. The route visits x Broads and y beautiful Broadland villages along its route.
There is also the Challenge Ride, a 40 mile fully signposted route, ideal for beginners and those wanting to overcome that little bit more of a challenge, as well as a 3 mile Family Ride. With a closed road sprint finish and a t-shirt awarded when riders finish their ride, you are guaranteed a personal welcome back!
Darren Cole who rode the tour last year said: “The Tour de Broads is a fantastic ride taking in the natural beauty of the broads national park, and I believe it will get better year on year.”
Last years event saw 1430 riders aged between 9 and 77 complete a collective 120,000kms. It was not all lycra clad weekend warriors, far from it as 70% of the riders were not regular cycling club members and many were riding their first cycle Sportive challenge. 14 year Ben Turner was delighted to complete the challenge with his family “It was amazing riding with so many other riders. I felt like a Tour de France rider. Everyone was so friendly and encouraged me to finish. I especially loved the closed road sprint finish – oh and the drinks and snacks at the stop and my medal!”.
Moving to Strumpshaw Hall is a major step after two years at The Parson Woodeforde pub in Weston Longville. Rumbelow explains the move “We loved having the event at Weston Longville but its popularity has led to the event outgrowing the infrastructure in the village. At Strumpshaw Hall we are closer to the Broads and have a updated the route to remove bottlenecks. We have plenty of car parking and easy access from the A47. We also have a new entry system that means no queuing to sign-on before the ride, riders will be able to arrive, meet up with friends and colleagues, have a cuppa and ride.
A mini festival will be on during the Saturday featuring local bands and a Woodfordes bar, with the main event being a custom built mountain bike trail – all in the beautiful grounds of Strumpshaw Hall. Bike and tent hire will also be available for riders, who want to make a weekend of it.
The two day event will also include a wide range of free festival activities including the Total-Trax portable mountain bike circuit to improve your bike handling as well as a children’s area providing Balance Bikes for 2-5 year olds – we like to start them young in Broadland!
Revolution Events organiser Luke Rumbelow is also excited at the prospect of the inaugural event. “Last year the Tour de Broads doubled it’s entrants, and this year we are expecting over 2,000 riders to take part, which is fantastic for this area! The three routes offer something different for every type of rider with challenging ascents and the popular downhills, the Tour de Broads is a cycle event for anyone to come and enjoy”.
For more information and to secure your entry into our rides on the day, go to www.revolutionevents.bike.
Tickets cost from only £10. As a social enterprise, all profits from the rides are used to engage, inspire and enable local people into cycling and enjoy the immediate benefits of an active lifestyle. Fund raising is used to provide coaching sessions and grow the loan bike fleet.