Essential Guide to the CiCLE Classic

 

Essential Guide to the Rutland – Melton International CiCLE Classic

The 2017 edition of the CiCLE Classic  cemented the race’s position as the premier and longest standing one day international race on the British calendar available to British competitors. With 33 teams competing, and with a worthy lone winner in the form of Conor Dunne (JLT-Condor) whose team also took the team competition, who could wish for better racing.

24th April 2016. CiCLE Classic 2016. Photo by Jordan Mansfield/jordanphoto.co.uk

24th April 2016. CiCLE Classic 2016. Photo by Jordan Mansfield/jordanphoto.co.uk

What makes the race so attractive is its unique character and course; a blend of wide roads around Rutland Water to narrow and treacherous farm tracks more reminiscent of those to be found in the Spring ‘classic races’ in northern France and Belgium.

The 2016 edition was the CiCLE Classic’s twelfth year and has developed from a promising new event on the British cycle racing calendar, to possibly the most attractive one day pro cycle race Britain has to offer.

More than ever spectators and race followers saw the race live on the day, and with the subsequent TV screening on Channel 4, British Eurosport, Sky, Bike Channel, and ESPN, Fox and Supersport worldwide, the race can legitimately say that it has been seen by its greatest ever audience.

Additionally new for 2016 the same organisation staged its first Women’s CiCLE Classic on Sunday 17th July, and this returns bigger than ever together with the Junior CiCLe Classic on Sunday 4th June in 2017. Using many of the same roads as  the Men’s race, Britain’s Women and Junior Men racers and their growing group of supporters will be able to experience the thrill of ‘close combat’ bike racing the only the CiCLE Classic can present.

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2017 Edition

In 2016 the race remains Britain’s foremost and longest established single day international road race, and with sponsorship from the Giant Store Rutland Water and Schwalbe with Dare2b providing overall sponsorship to both the Rutland and the Thoresby Weekends of cycling, can you afford to miss it??

When and where is it happening?

Sunday 23rd April 2017

Start:  Market Place, Oakham town centre, 11 am

Finish:  Sherrard Street, Melton Mowbray, approx 3.35 pm

Who’s raced it?

In 2005, the CiCLE Classic had 110 entries, while in 2006 the race organisation accepted 150 entries from the 193 received and in 2007 156 riders started from 182 accepted from the 242 received. In 2008 and 2009 the race broke new ground with 200 riders accepted with a maximum of 180 riders being allowed to take the start.

This figure gives the race the largest ever field in Britain outside of either a World Championship or World Cup race.

In 2006 in only its second year, the flavour of international racing was provided first by the inclusion of the Australian based FRF Couriers -Caravello team.

Whilst during its first three editions the race formed part of the British Cycling Premier Calendar, in 2008 the CiCLE Classic was removed from this competition by British Cycling on the grounds that it was an international race.

2008 saw the very first foreign winner in the form of former Giro D’Italia competitor Kieren Power of the Irish Republic.

In 2010 Michael Berling (Glud & Marstrand) of Denmark took the win ahead of former African Continental Champion Dan Craven (Rapha-Condor-Sharp) of Namibia.

Many consider the race came of age in 2009 with the participation of former Paris-Roubaix winner Magnus Backstedt of Sweden. (now British Eurosport Commentator and Ironman Hawaii 2014 finisher)

In 2009 eight full continental based teams took part with each making a significant contribution to a very active day of racing as did the five teams accepted to the race in 2007 and 2008.

In 2010 the race again stood alone as Britain’s ONLY international (UCI Europe Tour) one day road race, and this was the same in 2011.

In the past four years the field has included World and Commonwealth Games Champions, as well as Olympic medalists.

In 2012, befitting London Olympic year, riders from over 20 nations took part in the CiCLE Classic, and in 2013 the number of countries represented in the race rose to 27.

For any British rider with ambition, the race will once again be THE race to win, and with increased foreign team interest, the race has become a far more difficult task although Ian Wilkinson proved in 2013 that it’s more than possible and is the only rider to win the race twice, first in 2009 (Halfords-Bikehut) and then in 2013 with (Team UK Youth.)

In 2014 Ian Wilkinson raced with Team Raleigh alongside Frenchman and 2012 winner Alex Blain and regular CiCLE top 10 finisher Yanto Barker.

Here’s a taste of CiCLE action from 2013:  View video here

Winner of the race in 2015 was: Steele Von Hoff – NFTO

In 2016 the first British created UCI Pro Continental team, ONE Pro Cycling road their first race on British soil after their elevation to the 2nd division of World road racing by contesting the CiCLE Classic. Unfortunately they were denied the win by JLT-Condor’s Connor Dunn whose late attack left the heavy legged group that remained to play out the finale as the race entered Melton for it’s final time.

Who will make 2017 their year to win the Rutland-Melton International CiCLE Classic?

Where shall I go and watch?

There will be lots of great vantage points on the route.

At the start there will be catering  and supporting events. At the finish supported by Melton Borough Council there will be the annual St Georges Day parades to keep the assembled crowds entertained before the race arrives first at around 15.00 hrs and then to finish around 15.35 hrs. The race start will again be via two laps of Rutland Water before returning to Oakham for the Oakham Wines sponsored ‘Hot spot sprint’ adjacent to the Market Place.

Want a village fete atmosphere?

Try Owston or Burrough on the Hill, both of which are visited by the race several times.

In Owston, there is always a popular barbeque and teas at the village hall, and also toilet facilities and parking!  There will also be regular announcements from race commentator,
Hugh Porter who takes up a vantage point in Owston, as the riders come through the village no less than six times.  In Burrough on the Hill, Grant’s Freehouse is well placed to see the race several times as it laps the village.

Main points on route and approximate times – to be confirmed for 2016:

1100 Oakham town centre – START – Market Square/Butter Cross.
1119 Edith Weston (Lap 1)
1206 Oakham Victoria Hall  (Hot Spot Sprint point)
1220 Cold Overton hill  (King of the Hills)
1240 Owston
1248 Burrough on the Hill (King of the Hills)
1300 Owston
1308 Somerby  (Somerberg)
1325 Burrough on the Hill (King of the Hills)
1334 Owston   (Hot Spot Sprint point)
1344 Burrough on the Hill
1408 Owston   (Hot Spot Sprint point)
1422 Somerby
1425 Pickwell
1438
1452 & 15.10
Cuckoo Hill / Stapleford
Saxby Road B676
Sawgate Lane (Burton Lazars)
Stapleford
Saxby Road B676
Melton town centre (First passage) FINISH – Sherrard StreetMelton town centre ) FINISH – Sherrard Street

Will roads be closed?

To protect the cyclists and members of the public there will be road closures in operation along the route, including a 20 minute road closure on the main road into Melton.   Other routes of entry into the town will be closed to traffic in either direction 10 minutes before the leading riders reach the outskirts of the town.

Spectators are advised to plan their arrival at their preferred viewing spot well ahead of the scheduled time of arrival of the race, to ensure they are able to take their positions.

Where can I find out more?

Classic and Junior Route 2014

The 2016 route will be confirmed here.  Last year’s route can be accessed below:

CiCLE Classic & Junior Route 2015

Information on preparations and results as they are known will be posted here!