mitie revoloution london event sportive

Sportives are mass participation, organised rides, that give cyclists the chance to enjoy spinning along with like minded riders.

Way-marking, mechanical assistance, feed stations and electronic timing are usually provided - so effectively all you need to do is turn up with your bike (and a puncture repair kit) - ready to roll.

All the Kit You Need for Your First Sportive

Riding a sportive takes away the planning of a normal ride, and you might just find that having a number on the front of your bike makes you ride a little faster.

There are a lot of sportives out there with macho names that promise to 'rip your legs off' and 'test your limits'. But if that's not your cup of tea, don't let it put you off the events altogether.

Sportives can vary from less than 10 miles to well over 100 - we've rounded up some of the beginner friendly events for those thinking of dipping a toe in...


The Cycletta women's only sportives take place all over the country - and excluding the Wiggle Dragon Ride, at 42km, every event has a 20km option.

Most events offer routes up to 150km, with plenty more options in between, so you can work up towards greater distances throughout the season.

These events aren't just about the ride - though they do promise amazing scenery an quiet roads - everyone is welcome to enjoy the 'Recovery Zone' on return and there is always an event village to keep family and friends amused.

Events and dates include:

Macmillan Cycletta @ Wiggle Dragon Ride, Sun 7th June 2015

(Margam Park, Port Talbot, Wales) , Distance: 42km

Bedfordshire (Woburn Abbey), Saturday 20th June 2015

Distances: 20km, 40km, 70km

Perth, Scotland (Scone Palace), Sunday 19th July 2015

Distances: 20km, 50km, 100km and 150km

Guildford, Surrey (Loseley Park), Sunday 6th September 2015

Distances: 20km, 50km, 100km and 150km

New Forest (Beaulieu Palace), Sunday 20th September 2015

Distances: 20km, 50km, 100km and 150km

Cheshire (Tatton Park), Sunday 27th September 2015

Distances: 20km, 50km, 100km and 150km

Find out more and sign up here.

st bees

Taking place on Monday 4 May this sportive loops over 25 or 50 miles of beautiful Cumbrian countryside.

The 25 mile route starts alongside a low coastal path, before a climb takes riders to the upper coastal path, before shooting down to the HQ. If you opt for the 50 mile route, you'll enjoy a few extra climbs, and rejoin the 25-milers on your return.

Check out the website for more details of this and other West Coast Challenge events.


Specifically designed for people riding their first sportives, this event is purposefully non-threatening.

You can choose to ride 18 or 36 miles, and both routes promise to be prominently flat, based in a network of scenic country lanes.

How to: Change an Inner Tube

You'll pass farmland and get a chance to do a little house-touristing as you sweep between some very posh houses owned by celebrities, and the odd footballer - that might be a plus or a minus for you, but a little intiguing for all of us!

There are Bronze, Silver and Gold awards based on finish time - though it isn't a race - and a feedstation on the route - find out more here.


With a cute design, how could we not include this 30 mile ride in North Yorkshire?

There are a couple of climbs along the way but no intimidating ascents and the entire route will be way marked, with mechanical assistance available should you need it.

Check out the info and route maps here.


This is a female friendly ride that isn't exclusively for women, so partners and friends who were born with the wrong chromosomes (we don't mean it!) are allowed to come along, too!

Ask the Expert: What Should I Do When I Bonk When Cycling?

You can choose between a friendly 21 mile route, a more challenging 40 miles or the full 68 miles - but regardless you may get a sight of Davina McCall on the roads as she begins after the last rider and tries to catch everyone up!

After the ride, which loops through pleasant Sussex whichever option you take, there will be a BBQ lunch.

All funds go to Action Medical Research, to - find out more here.

bike bath

This sportive has three route options - 25 miles, 50, or 80. Starting and finishing in the center of Bath, you'll explore the lanes and then return to the event village where there will be some treats and rewards for your efforts.

Timing chips, way-marking, back-up maps and GPX files are included as well as mechanical support, post-ride food and the all important finishers medal.

Find out more about the event and sign up here.


Cambridge is probably as close to Holland we've got in the UK. The Wimpole Estate, a National Trust beauty located just outside the pancake flat cycling friendly city is a great place to begin your first mass participation ride.

Routes begin at a gentle 15 miles, with 36, 63 and 89 mile options also available - a few rolling hills might interrupt your spin over the country lanes but you shouldn't encounter any real beasts along the way.

Since the ride takes place in the middle of the Tour de France excitement, there will be a live screening of the event at the HQ - the perfect way to enjoy a post ride snack and cup of tea!

Check out the event, with full way-marking, feed stations and support, here.


Beginning in leafy Poynton this event, organised by the Torelli cycling club, offers 30, 60 or 100 mile route options.

The club have gained support from High5, who have stocked the feed stations, and there will be changing rooms, showers, plenty of parking, and free drinks at the event HQ.

The route is way marked, and you can download it before the event - if you want a sneak peak, the 30 mile option is mapped out for you here.

If you feel like, with July underway, you want to test your fitness out, there are Gold, Silver and Bronze standards based on finish time, and a team competition where you can ride together to achieve your best time.

There will be an event commentator on hand, too - so there should be plenty to keep anyone left behind at HQ occupied! Find out more and sign up here.

Ladies of the  lake sportive

Sportive Lakes is an event company run by a husband and wife duo who set about creating social, not competitve events in the UK after falling in love with the retro L’Eroica and its retro approach.

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

This September event offers two route options - one a smidge under 30 miles, with just over 2,000 ft of climbing, and a more challenging 44 mile ride with more than 4,000.

Both routes take riders around the lakes - there are some climbs along the way, but breathtaking views and the support of fellow riders could make this a wonderful late season leg tester in your first year of sportiving.

Check out the details here.


Hamshire's New Forest is a sensational location for a ride, so if you've not taken a spin around the area, this is sure to be a great experience.

There are four available routes, beginning with a family friendly 15 mile circuit that accumulates a gentle 700 ft of climbing. This route is a traffic free mixture of forest tracks, so it's designed for a hybrid bike as opposed to a speedy roadster.

Next up, there's a 30 mile option with still less than 1,000 feet of climbing, as well as 45 and 60 mile rides available too.

You'll be treated to the forest in autumn, and the event raises money for Orchid, the male cancer fund - check out the info here.

We hope one of these takes your fancy! If you're after something more challenging - check out our round up of the best UK sportives here.