Cycle UK's new challenge ride heralds summertime

Cycling UK has announced a new Challenge Ride Series of sportives for 2017 – which gets underway with Cycling Stevenage’s ‘Start of Summertime’ on Sunday, 26 March. Around 400 riders will be losing an hour’s sleep the night before the popular Hertfordshire event, as the clocks go forward at 1am.

The Challenge Ride Series 2017 comprises 16 handpicked rides organised by some of Cycling UK’s local Member Groups, which will involve nearly 3,500 participants in total. Cycling UK Chief Executive Paul Tuohy said: “Many of the rides include a choice of distances, so anyone interested in taking part should find one to suit their own requirements – whether it’s 14 miles, 50, 100 or 130.

“The series will give people the perfect excuse to cycle in some of our amazing countryside and perhaps discover an area they haven’t visited before.

“You can, for example, enjoy Momma’s Mountain Views with Two Mills CTC, go Back to the Fuschia with Leicestershire and Rutland CTC, and explore the delights of Devon with Devon CTC. Whichever you choose, a grand day out is guaranteed!”

All finishers will receive a Challenge Ride Series medal and ribbon branded with the event name, a certificate, and a Cycling UK goodie bag, in addition to anything supplied by the local organisers. The series kicks off with Cycle Stevenage’s Start of Summertime ride on 26 March and ends with its Emitremmus Desrever (Summertime Reversed) on 29 October.

In between, there will be rides throughout Britain in locations including The Wirral, Ayrshire, East Anglia, North Wales, the New Forest, Newcastle and Swansea. And, for night owls, there’s always the Morecambe Midsummer Midnight Madness ride.

Cycling UK Challenge Ride Series 2017 – event list

26 March: Start of Summertime Starts: Stevenage (Number of riders – 400) 9 April: Early Season Challenge Ride Starts: Farndon, nr Chester (250) 23 April: Bowland Forest Populaire Starts: Wray, Lancaster (40) 14 May: Back to the Fuschia Starts: Thornton, Leicestershire (40) 21 May: Between the Parks/Park2Park Starts: Woodley, nr Romsey (100) 4 June: Bamburgh Summer 100 Starts: Gubeon Golf Centre, nr Morpeth (30) 11 June: Cumnock Canter/Glespin Gallop Starts: Troon, South Ayrshire (100) 25 June: The Des Radford 100 Miler Starts: Sail Bridge, Swansea (30) 9 July: Diss Dawdle/Diss Dander Starts: Diss, Norfolk (150) 16 July: Devon Delight Starts: Newton Abbot (200) 20 August: Tour of the Hills Starts: Shere, Surrey (200) 27 August: Wild Wales Challenge Starts: Bala, Gwynedd (600) 2 Sept: Momma’s Mountain Views Starts: Tattenhall, Cheshire (50) 16 Sept: Discovering Shropshire (Blue Remembered Hills) Starts: Upton Magna (40) 8 October: Gridiron 100 Starts: Lymington, New Forest (800) 29 October: Emitremmus Desrever Starts: Stevenage (300)

Total number of participants: 3,330

For more information contact the national Cycling UK Press Office on 01483 238 315, 07786 320 713 or email