Q. How much does it cost?
A. Ride 2017 costs £505 per person.
Q. How is the ride organised?
A. The event is organised by a dedicated committee of volunteers who, together with many supporters, now have a wealth of experience in arranging all aspects of the Ride and each year try hard to improve it.
Q. What kind of bike do I need?
A. We see a mix of road/race, hybrid, touring and even mountain bikes. You will need a road-worthy, well-maintained bike that will get you through your chosen route – bearing in mind that you will encounter hills. We will be running practice rides to help you get ride-fit.
Q. What type of hotels do we use?
A. We stay at good quality 2 and 3 star hotels. We try to ensure that quality is shared equally over the ride.
Q. What sort of roads do we cycle on?
A. We select our routes carefully, taking cycle paths and small country roads, without much traffic, where practical.
Q. Where does the money go and how much goes towards administration?
A. 100% of the money raised goes to charity. Over 500 charities and deserving causes have benefited in the past from more than £1,500,000 raised. All costs of organising the event are paid out of the entry fee and business sponsorship.
Q. How much money do we have to raise?
A. As much as you can get, but we expect all riders to raise at least £150 for their chosen charity. We encourage you to send the money direct to your chosen charity but you can send it through us if you prefer.
Q. How many miles do we do each day?
A. Typically between 50 and 90 miles. We often provide shorter routes on longer days.
Q. What do I have to carry on my bike?
A. All bags are carried in the support vans. All you need to carry with you is route notes, perhaps a map, money, passport, your rider info card, EHIC card, water, essential repair kit and maybe a mobile phone.
Q. What do I need to pack?
A. Enough cycling clothing for 5 days plus something to wear in the evenings and – of course – your fancy dress. Some people prefer to wash their cycle apparel each day which means they always have fresh clothing! Please bear in mind there is a strict baggage allowance and don’t pack heavy objects either at the start or during the ride.
Q. Is there a weight limit for luggage bags
A. Yes each rider’s total bags (overnight and main) must not exceed 12Kg – we will not load overweight bags. We will load only one bag per rider, so you must be able to fit your overnight bag into your main bag.
Q. What do we do about eating?
A. Morning and lunchtime stops are at recommended locations, with a reasonably-priced communal lunch arranged, where we do not have a major town with a good selection of restaurants, shops, bars and patisseries. Some afternoon stops are also recommended. Riders pay for their meals, except for breakfast in hotels and the Gala Dinner in Caen. There are plenty of restaurants near all of the hotels.
Q. What information do we get before & during the ride?
A. You will receive a Newsletter leading up to the ride, containing all you need to know. On departure you are given a comprehensive information pack and daily updates are available during the ride.
Q. What speed do we have to cycle?
A. All riders are encouraged to cycle at their own comfortable pace. Even one mph faster than comes natural can take it out of you. You will usually find other riders who cycle at your pace and so it is inevitable that riders will split up into groups.
Q. How do new riders get involved?
A. We organise social practice rides and ensure that everyone gets to know each other during the ride.