Organisers of a new Bristol to Weston-super-Mare challenge hope it could become the West Country equivalent of the London to Brighton Bike Ride.
Starting in the UK’s first designated Cycling City and ending on the seafront at the famous Victorian resort, the Great Weston Ride on 18 July will cover a stunning 56-mile route through the Mendip Hills and across the Somerset Levels.
Ride director Andy Cook said: “There’s a huge number of newer cyclists looking for a challenge who feel a little overawed at some of the distances and climbing associated with the major sportives, but at the same time find the shorter recreational events not enough of a challenge. It’s hoped this event will fill that niche while at the same time engaging with the community and involving local companies.
“It’s first and foremost a challenge event aimed at getting people out on their bikes, but it’s something that most people should be able to tackle with a bit of determination. Whether experienced riders or novices, people can do it at their own pace. It’s very much intended as a social and community occasion, and riders who take the challenge will feel a huge sense of achievement when they cross the finish line.”
Participants will be encouraged to raise money for charities, including Wallace and Gromit’s Grand Appeal and Shine Together, the umbrella charity for Bristol’s Frenchay and Southmead hospitals.
The ride is being supported by Sustrans, NCP and Better By Bike. It’s registered with British Cycling, so riders will get insurance cover plus services including route signage, marshalling, medical cover and mechanical support. For more details, visit www.greatwestonride.com.