Road sportives are non-competitive organised events that provide the opportunity to spend a day in the saddle just concentrating on the riding, with the route, feed stations and riding buddies sorted for you.


Entering a sportive that you know will provide a real challenge is a great way to motive yourself to get out and ride - and there are hundreds available, from 12 miles to well over 100.

A number of women's only rides are available, if you want to spin out with like minded ladies, too. Here's a look at some of the best on the market for 2015...

Kent Velo Girls sportive

The Kent Velo Girls (KVG) is one of the fastest growing clubs in the UK - they're all about encouraging women to ride, and enjoying miles of smiles in good company. This sportive shares the same goals and ethos as the promoting club.

The event, on April 19, features rides of 20, 40 and 60 miles - taking riders through some of the beautiful Kent, East Sussex and Surrey countryside.

The 20 mile route covers 1,000 ft of climbing, whilst the 60 miler heads up Kidds Hill and into the Ashdown Forest, accumilating 3,700ft.


The Wiggle Dragon Ride has quickly taken its place as a bucket list sportive.

The ride began in the early 2000's, when 270 riders chose to take on the untamable terrain of South Wales, riding the original 226km route.

Climbs along the way are long and alpinesque, unlike the shorter climbs found through most of the UK, and include the Black Mountain and Devil's Elbow.

There are 5 route options available now, including a women's only Cycletta to encourage more ladies to get involved.

Macmillan Cycletta Add More 20km Routes to the Series

Routes include:

Dragon Devil: 302km (total climbing 3,437m)

Gran Fondo: 226km (total climbing 2,905m)

Medio Fondo: 153km (total climbing 2,060m)

Corto: 43km approx* (total climbing 397m)

Cycletta: 43km approx* (total climbing 397m)

The event takes place on Sunday June 7 this year and you can enter here.

Langholm Sportive

The Muckle what?

The Muckle Toon Festival takes place in Langholm, about 20 minutes over the border in Scotland and is a celebration of all things outdoors - with walks, MTB rides, cross country runs, and this sportive.

You can book for the entire weekend, and camp from 19-21 June, making it a great event for all the family, or you can visit for the ride on Sunday 21, for £18.50.

You can choose to ride 30, 60 or 90 miles, and all routes promise panoramic views of the rolling border hills, as well as challenging climbs, such as the 21% climb buried into the medium and long routes - but there will be rewarding descents to make every pedal stroke worth it.


Touring the Yorkshire Dales, this classic sportive covers much of the scenery seen in the 2014 Tour de France prologue. This is a tough ride for those after a challenge!

Starting in Grassington the route covers 112 miles, totting up a more-than-undulating 9,545 feet of climbing along the way.

Riders encounter Fleets Moss, Buttertubs and the Coal Road- all of which will test your legs to new levels, but the achievement of adding this one to your conquests will be well worth it.

This year the ride takes place on Sunday May 17 and you can enter here.


With an ambassador like 'superwoman' Davina McCall, this bike ride promises to be so full of energy you'll be bursting out of the start gate.

You can opt to ride 21, 40, or 67 miles - and Davina will greet each rider, before setting off to cover 67 miles, catching riders as she goes - adding a little competition for those who want to stay away!

Davina McCall's Top 10 Tips to Getting Back in the Saddle

All three loops take in beautiful Sussex country lanes, before returning for a hearty BBQ, to top up the fuel found at feed stations along the way.

You can enter for £55, or raise further funds for the charity, Action Medical Research, and enter for £30 - find out more here.


If you're looking for a welcoming, beginner friendly sportive, this event on July 18 could well be perfect for you.

Riders can choose 20 of 40 miles, and though the start town of Ashbourne is known as the 'Gateway to the Peak' - these routes go the opposite diction, to the gentle Southern lanes.

The 40 mile route still covers 1,700 feet of climbing, so the gentle hills will offer a challenge that will surely warrant cake somewhere along the way.

This is a relaxed, welcoming ride, that costs just £15.

Llandrindod Wells  sportive

Run by Daisy Chain Bike Events for Women, this sportive consists of three different routes -24, 39, and 52 mile options on July 19.

All riders will enjoy a fair amount of climbing, with the 24 milers ascending 2,100 ft, and the 52 mile riders accumulating a sensational 5,800 ft as they swoop over the Elan Valley resevoirs, picturesque Wye Valley and the edge of Radnor Forest.

The long route riders can choose to split off to the medium route half way round, but those that stay will climb to the top of Rhogo and take in awesome views into England.

Entry is £20 - £28, cake is promised at the feed stations, and you can find out more here.

Chenies Velo Classique

Part of the Chilterns Cycling festival, the Chenies Velo Classique is a festival of vintage cycling, history and heritage.

You can ride 30 or 100 miles - the long route tackling tough climbs in the South East, whilst the shorter option is retro inspired and trundles along chalk roads on the Bank Holiday Monday.

Alongside the ride, there will be a velo village - with vintage stalls, gourmet food and wine, and cycling fashion.

Vintage bikes and dress are encouraged - so you best start planning your outfit before entering here.

Ladies of the  lake sportive

Sportive Lakes was launched by Alan and Alison Brenton, with the aim to offering more relaxed sportives that would be social and non-competitive, inspired by L'Eroica and its retro approach.

The Heroic Spirit of Vintage Cycling in Tuscany at L'Eroica

They host a selection of events, including 'Ladies of the Lakes', on September 13.

There are two routes available - the 30 mile Rusland Rouleur, with 2,604 feet of climbing, or the Three Lakes Ride, at 44 miles and just a smidge over 4,000 feet.

Both skirt around the beautiful lakes, with the longer route passing over to Hawkshead, around Esthwaite Water, and climbing to Tarn Hows - which offers a fine view and a swooping descent down to Coniston Water.

The organisers call this a 'magical and challenging route', entry ranges from £24 - £31.


This ride packs a serious punch into shorter distance than most - it's perfect for the mountain goats out there, and promises to really test your climbing legs.

The short 37 mile route covers a quad-aching 5,741 feet of climbing - over 10 of the most famous climbs in the area.

The gradients are in excess of 20% and include Sydnope Hill, Bank Road, Riber Road, Wirksworth, Bonsall, Birchover & Rowsley Bar.

There is a shorter route, at under 20 miles, which covers 2,400 feet over 4 climbs, too.

Ride Box Hill Like a Pro: Top Tips from Team Sky Rider Ben Swift

This is a challenge to do with a friend for a little moral support, but the good news is you'll be done and dusted around lunch time, ready for a restful afternoon in the knowledge you've ticked off one of the hardest 37 mile rides around. Entry is just £20, too.

Do these sound up your street? Check out our 100 mile training plan to help you build up to big challenges.