After 15 months of waiting, French cyclosportive races are coming back as strong as ever. One need only look at the 3300 participants at last weekend’s Gran Fondo Mont Ventoux in the Piemonte region to realise that the amateur side of the sport is surging back to life.
And their is a lot of pent-up demand with summer events now selling out at full capacity.
Western France has given the green light for 2500 cyclists to ride Cyclo PLB Muco in Callac on 3 July with all starting bibs almost completely gone.
On 20 June cyclists will climb Alpe d’Huez’s famous 21 switchbacks as part of GFNY Vaujany in the French Alps. It will the first amateur event in almost two years to ascend the legendary Col.
The 33rd edition of the Cyclosportive Les Copains-Cyfac on 3 July in Ambert is already filled up with 3000 registrants eager to to climb the Puy de Dôme’s 5.8 kilometre road at 10.8% gradient.
The 5-day Haute Route Pyrenees event starting 6 July will usher in the first post-pandemic event in the Pyrenees. Cyclists will ride iconic Tour de France climbs on empty roads – except for occasional goats and Pyrenean donkeys.
Those seeking a bit more post-pandemic challenge are riding Maurienne Trilogy, one of the oldest and toughest events in French cyclosport, 9-11 July in the heart of the French Alps. They will race up some of the biggest and most famous French passes: Lacets de Montvernier, Col du Chaussy, de la Madeleine, Col de la Croix de Fer, Glandon, Mollards and the massive Col du Galibier.
But not all French cyclosportives successfully navigated the pandemic this season. The list of major 2022 summertime events cancelled is long and includes: L’Immortelle, La Périgordine, La Volcane, l’Ardéchoise, Cyclosportive l’Ariégeoise, L’Alsacienne and France’s largest amateur event L’etape du Tour with over 15000 participants.
We hope they all stage a comeback in 2022.
Vive la France!