Welsh Cycle Rides - 2014 highlights

Last updated 5 March 2014
Compiled by Andrew Cornwell

Welcome to Cycling Councillor's selection of the best cycling events in Wales for the coming season.

This selection covers sportive, charity, audax and leisure rides across Wales, with direct links to each event organiser's website for more information and online entry. All these events are on-road and none are races.

All these events and hundreds more are reviewed in full in Andrew Cornwell's Cycling 2014 - a pocket guide to road cycling in Britain. Click here to find out more about this unique annual guidebook.

Please be aware that event dates, distances and start times may be subject to change - always check directly with the organisers before setting out. Enjoy your riding!


APRIL 2014

Yr Elenydd / The Elenith (Saturday 12 April)
Tough Audax classic featuring the notorious Devil's Staircase on the mountain road to Tregaron among 4950m of climbing in stunning landscapes. 305 km. Upton Magna, near Shrewsbury. £10. Audax.

Tour of Pembrokeshire
(Saturday 26 April)
Hilly sportive rides in and around the Pembrokeshire Coast national park combining coastal and inland scenery. 50, 75 or 100 miles, Orel y Parc, St David's Pembrokeshire. £30. Event website.

Rhondda Traverse (Sunday 27 April)  
Cheap alternative to the Dragon Ride taking in top South Wales cimbs of Rhigos, Bwlch, Penrhys and Maerdy. 109 km. Merthyr Tydfil. £4.50. Audax.

MAY 2014

Brevet Cymru
(Saturday 3 May)
Grand circuit of South Wales via Wye Valley, Golden Valley, Llandovery, Tregaron and New Quay with a night return via Brecon Beacons. Highly recommended. 401 km. Chepstow. £9Audax.

Bryan Chapman Memorial (Saturday 17 May)
Legendary and very challenging Audax: double traverse of Wales in a weekend from Chepstow to Menai Bridge and back. 619 km. Chepstow. £30. Audax.

On Your Bike for Barnardos (Sunday 18 May) 
Gentle charity ride from western edge of Cardiff through Vale of Glamorgan - it has been running 32 years. 38 miles. Copthorne Hotel, Culverhouse Cross, Cardiff. £12.50. More information.

JUNE 2014

Dragon Ride
 (Sunday 8 June)
Wales' most famous sportive running into Brecon Beacons, long sold out to over 3000 cyclists. New 300 km distance added this year. 45, 152, 222 or 300 km. Margan Park, Port Talbot. £32.50-£87.50. Organiser's website.

South Wales Bike Ride (Sunday 22 June)
Long-standing charity event to benefit British Heart Foundation. Family-friendly cycling either on the Gower Peninsula or to the north of Swansea. 12, 28 or 46 miles. Recreation Ground, St Helen's, Swansea. £10. More information.

Mille Cymru (Friday 27 June)
Epic three day Audax run every four years, covering nearly every mountain range and well-known climb in Wales from Snowdonia to the Pembrokeshire coast. 1007 km. Upton Magna, near Shrewsbury. £75. Audax.

Merlin Ride (Sunday 29 June)  
Popular West Wales event with some distance options climbing the Black Mountain. 50, 70, 85 or 105 miles. National Botanic Garden, Llanarthne, Carmarthenshire. £35. Event website.

JULY 2014

North Wales Coast Bikeathon
(Saturday 5 July)
Fourth year for this local fundraiser for Leukaemia Research, using the traffic-free Conway coastal path. 26 km. Central beach, Prestatyn, Denbighshire. £10. Event information.

Championship Sportive (Saturday 12 July)
Uses the roads to be taken by the country's elite riders the following day in the National Road Race Championships, notably including The Tumble and Bwlch climbs in the eastern Brecon Beacons. 20, 41, 67 or 100 miles. Abergavenny. £10-£40. Event website.

Welsh Cycling Festival (25-29 July)
CTC Wales organise this annual long weekend camping rally, offering three road rides daily, plus off-road alternatives, as well as a hill climbing and freewheeling competition. More information.


Gladestry Audax Weekend (Saturday 16 & Sunday 17 August)
Six varied opportunities to explore lovely mid-Wales circuits ranging from a 50 km 'trot' to a couple of tough 200 km tests. 50 km-208 km. Gladestry, nr Kington, Powys. £5. Audax.



Etape Cymru 
(Sunday 14 September) 
Controversial 'closed roads' event, taking on steep climbs of the Clywdian range including the classic Horseshoe Pass. 88 miles. Bangor-on-Dee Racecourse, Wrexham. £62Organiser's website.

Tattenhall Audaxes (Sunday 21 September)  
The longer two options cross the border to visit Lake Vyrnwy, the Dee Valley and the Horseshoe Pass. Scenic but hilly. 50, 137 or 209 km. Tattenhall, Cheshire. £5. Audax.

Cycling 2014 - a pocket guide to road cycling in Britain by Andrew Cornwell

Cycling 2014, Andrew's annual pocket guide to road cycling in Britain, is now published. With over 800 cycle rides and events reviewed for 2014, it is the only comprehensive guidebook of its kind on the market - and an essential tool to help you plan your season. Find out more here.