The UCI Gran Fondo World Series, the UCI’s masters and amateur mass participation series, will grow considerably in 2017 with 19 qualifier events. The UCI Gran Fondo World Championships will take place in Albi, in the south of France.
Two events have already taken place in the past few months, starting with the Poznan Bike Challenge (Poland) which attracted 6500 starters and Amy’s Gran Fondo (Australia) with 5500 participants. Both events scored a new participation record.
Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge is a new qualifier in the series. Last year, the biggest cycling for all event in the Middle East attracted some 2000 participants to the iconic city of Dubai. The event will be held mid-December.
Tour de Bintan is the second new event and takes place on the exotic island of Indonesia, which is easy accessible from Singapore. This event is a perfect example of one of the goals of the series: to combine cycling and tourism. Riders have a chance to participate in a high quality cycling event and at the same time benefit from the region’s touristic offers.
Cyprus Granfondo is an existing stage race that becomes part of the UCI series. It will be a chance for European riders to qualify early in the season in good weather conditions with flat but also hilly courses.
Blayney to Bathurst (B2B) Cyclo Sportif Challenge is the new qualifier in Australia. The event near Sydney gives the Aussies another chance to represent their country at the Worlds. Australia has been the most successful country in number of participants in the World Championships over the past 6 years.
The Tour of Ayrshire, in Scotland, is the fifth new event. After a very successful Tour of Cambridgeshire in the past two years, the same organisers decided to export their concept to a second UK event near Glasgow.
When Fränk Schleck decided to retire from professional cycling a few weeks ago, one of his goals was to set up a mass participation event on his training routes to show people the beauty of the region where he prepared his Tour successes. Schleck Granfondo is the perfect opportunity for riders from central western Europe to qualify for the Albi Worlds.
The UCI Gran Fondo World Series is also happy to announce a new US event with the Cheaha Challenge Granfondo in Jacksonville, Alabama. The century ride (100 miles) takes riders two times over the Cheaha Mountain.
Tour de Campeche in Mexico is the last new event in the series: a flat race with a time trial and road race in the touristic Yucatan region, the safest place in Mexico.
Other classical venues remain in the series: Forrest Grape Ride, Rhodes Gran Fondo Tour, L’Albigeoise, Tour of Cambridgeshire, Maraton Franja, Grey County Road Race, Niseko Classic, La Leggendaria Charly Gaul and Gran Fondo Denmark are all proven high quality events.
The UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Albi, France, will take place from August24 to 27, with a 22km time trial and a 146 or 94km Gran Fondo on undulating roads, a typical classical course for strong riders.
The Poznan Bike Challenge and Amy’s Gran Fondo next September will be the first qualifying events for the 2018 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships. Poznan has been awarded the organisation of the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in 2019.
UCI Gran Fondo World Series