Best first sportive? South East?


Active Member
Hi all,

Can you recommend a newcomer friendly sportive? Ideally in Sussex but happy to travel to Kent or Surrey for the right event.

My wife and I are beginners to road cycling. We are gradually building endurance and hope to be upto approximately 50-60 mile ability by late spring.



Tattooed Beat Messiah
Here's a list of Sportives in the Southern area.
Highly recommended.

Also a bigger list HERE
Fill yer boots :bicycle::thumbsup:


I did the Reigate Rouleur (one of Southern Sportive's) a couple of years ago, which was a good route (although the middle hilly bit on the long route was a bit of a slog) and decent value too. It was my first sportive and I just went at my own pace.
If you can wait until the end of September, was good last year, starting from Redhill aerodrome. They may get their promotion sorted this year and attract more people, but there were not many people riding it last year, which meant it was quite friendly at the feed stops.


I've done quite a few in the area.

What sort of distance are you looking to do and at what time of year?

I wouldn't discount Audax events either.


Fleet, Hants
This was my first sportive a few years ago and it's in Sussex

I found it very friendly and it's one of the few that serve a hot meal at the end which is included in the price, everyone sits around chatting in the village hall.

At 1700m climbing it is not a particularly flat one though, but the finish at the top of Ditchling Beacon is a nice feeling at the end of a first sportive.
Ah, this was the thread I was thinking about.

You should definitely try an audax. They are a little like a sportive, only skewing a bit older and more beardy and carradicey. I did my first audax with El Supremo (Dave Hudson) and it was a great experience, even though I failed to finish. But it was very friendly and sooooo much food, they tried to get me to take a whole cake home! The weather was bad and a lot of people didn't turn up, so he'd over catered. Unlike a sportive, you don't get a marked route on the roads, but a series of directions to follow "Turn left at x-roads then ride for 3.5km to a t intersection ..." sort of thing.

And all this for the grand total of £6 + £2 for insurance! And for another £2 - I think - you can buy a medal

He's running 2 this year it seems, on the same day in July. You have to find a chequebook to pay him with - he's old school.
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