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In need of some New Year motivation? Then get ready for the 2024 Dragon Ride, the UK’s longest, toughest, and most iconic sportive

Entries reopen on Monday for the 20th anniversary edition of the legendarily gruelling Welsh ride

If, like us, you’ve spent the start of January scrabbling around for scraps of New Year’s motivation to kickstart your training, then look no further than this June’s Dragon Ride – the iconic and punishing sportive featuring some of Wales’ most stunning rural roads and lung-busting climbs, and a long-established contender for the title of Britain’s toughest sportive.

Entries for this year’s 20th anniversary edition of the Dragon Ride – which will take place on Sunday 23 June – will re-open to the public between Monday 8 and Wednesday 31 January, while those who registered for priority access can nab their place now, to ensure they’re among the 4,000-plus riders hoping to slay those demanding Welsh roads.

> Enter the Dragon Ride 2024

Dragon Ride 2023

Since its establishment back in 2004, inspired by the gruelling Gran Fondos of Italy, thousands of cyclists from across the world have flocked to Margam Park in search of an epic day in the saddle at the Dragon Ride.

And with the almost-300km Dragon Devil route racking up over 4,000m of ascent across some of the Brecon Beacons’ most renowned (and feared) climbs, you’re sure to have earned your finisher’s medal.

Dragon Ride 2023

And even if, from your hazy post-Christmas perspective, the full sufferfest appears a touch too daunting, there are three alternative shorter routes available at the end of June, including the 100km-long Macmillan100 ride.

That means there’s an option for every kind of cyclist to enjoy the stunning scenery, iconic event-day atmosphere, the inevitable sore legs, and the much more long-lasting sense of pride and accomplishment.

As the event enters its third decade, participants can also look forward to some surprise announcements in the lead-up to the historic day. After 3,000 early places were filled at the end of last year, a further 1,000 spots will be open to the public from Monday (8 January), and will remain open until the end of the month.

Dragon Ride 2023

While full route and event information is yet to be announced, 2023’s edition offered entrants four routes to choose from – a ‘short’ 100km ride, the 157km Medio Fondo, 213km Gran Fondo, or all 296km of the Milan-Sanremo-length Dragon Devil.

Choosing the longest routes guarantees riders the full tasting menu of tough Welsh climbs – Black Mountain, Devil’s Staircase, The Devil’s Elbow, Rhigos, The Bwlch, to name just a few – but the shorter routes feature many of the same classic ascents, so everyone’s climbing legs will be thoroughly tested.

With full route signs and even a timed hill climb available, all you have to do is pick your ride and get that pesky New Year’s training in...

Dragon Ride 2023

And we’re not the only ones excited about a day of suffering and enjoyment at the end of June – here’s what five-time Dragon slayer Faith Gladwyn had to say about the event: “The Dragon Ride is a great goal for all cyclists. The reward is a ride in a beautiful area with people of a like mind, and a massive sense of achievement at the end.

“With the long climbs up Rhigos and The Bwlch, the hours of freedom, and the camaraderie amongst the riders, the memories from this event will stay with me forever.”

Think you’re ready to slay the Dragon? If you believe you have what it takes, then head over to the website to get your tickets for this year’s special 20th edition of Britain’s toughest sportive – they will be snapped up fast, so be sure to get in quick, train hard, and we’ll see you in late June!

Get your tickets for the Dragon Ride 2024 here

This content has been added by a member of the staff

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