RideLondon returns this weekend after more than 1,000 days away
Tens of thousands of people are already confirmed to be part of this amazing celebration of cycling on traffic-free roads in London and Essex on Sunday 29 May. Meanwhile, others are being encouraged to join the fun, either by riding themselves or coming out to support and sampling an atmosphere like no other.
Championing pedal power
RideLondon, a 2012 London Olympic Games legacy event, aims to inspire more people to cycle to improve their physical and mental health and to showcase the bicycle as a sustainable mode of transport.
The event, first held in 2013, could not take place in 2020 or 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and returns in 2022 with a new format, a new place in the calendar and a new partnership with Essex County Council, which means brand-new event routes.
There is also a renewed determination to get more people onto bikes, with a particular focus on women and under-represented groups, including those with disabilities.
The 2022 edition will feature four inspirational rides including the hugely popular RideLondon FreeCycle (10:00 – 15:00) which takes place on eight miles of traffic-free roads in central London and is completely free for anyone to take part – people can just join the ride on the day. The route takes in some of London’s most famous sights and includes four Festival Zones full of activities and entertainment for all ages.
It is not necessary to own a bike to take part. TfL’s Santander Cycles will also be available to hire at docking stations across the city with their bikes serviced throughout the day.
Read about the RideLondon FreeCycle route and details.
Full festival of cycling
The other three inspiration rides are the sold-out RideLondon-Essex 100, 60 and 30. All three rides start on Victoria Embankment and head out to the picturesque Essex countryside before returning to London for a stunning finish at Tower Bridge.
The weekend also includes a three-day race for the world’s best female riders, the RideLondon Classique, which is a UCI Women’s WorldTour event, with two stages in Essex and a thrilling final stage in central London.
Hugh Brasher, Event Director of RideLondon, said: “With poor air quality in cities, global warming and the health and wellbeing crisis that is enveloping society, there’s never been a more important time to inspire people to get on to bicycles.
“The simplicity of the bike as a mode of transport and the physical and mental health benefits riding a bike brings means we need to inspire more people to get cycling. RideLondon is the perfect way to do this, as it’s an event for everyone, from beginners to experienced riders.”