The UCI Gran Fondo World Series will grow significantly next season with 10 new events featured on the 2020 calendar.
The UCI Gran Fondo World Series, the UCI’s mass participation series, will comprise 27 qualifying events worldwide in 2019-2020. The 2020 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships will take place in Vancouver / Whistler, Canada, from 9 to 13 September 2020. In 2019, a total of more than 60,000 riders - representing 76 different nationalities - took part in the events of the series, strengthening its standing as a leader in mass participation events worldwide.
The new season will see a rapid start in September 2019 as the cities of Vancouver and Whistler will be organizing the RBC GranFondo Whistler qualifier event one week after this year’s UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Poznan, Poland. The Canadian qualifier will take place on the 2020 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships course, providing riders with the opportunity to test the circuit, which will start in Vancouver and finish in Whistler.
A second new event in September will be Coast to Coast in Costa Rica. The event, taking place on 28-29 September, will combine routes between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the beautiful country, with riders heading towards the capital, San José, on the first day, and then back to the coastline on the second day.
The UCI is also happy to announce a new African qualifier event in Casablanca, Morocco. UCI Granfondo Casablanca, taking place on 23 February, will start and finish in the city centre and follow the coastline for a flat and fast course in an exotic climate. It will be the first African event on the calendar since 2015.
The fourth new event on the calendar is Around Samcheok in the Republic of Korea on the weekend of 11-12 April. It will feature a time trial on Saturday and a granfondo on Sunday, with parts of the course following the coastline, but also tackling one major climb.
Turkey will also host a new Granfondo in the city of Canakkala, famous for its Trojan horse and the epic battle fought during World War I. UCI Gran Fondo Troy will take place on 26 April.
Granfondo Moscow joins the UCI Gran Fondo World Series for the first time. It will be organised for the third year in the city centre of the Russian capital, where the road race on May 24 will follow a 16km loop around the ring of Moscow, passing next to the Red Square and other iconic buildings. The time trial, which will take place a day earlier, will be on wide open lanes near Moscow University.
Riders who are curious to get a first glimpse of potential 2021 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships courses can participate in the Granfondo Banja Luka in Bosnia and Herzegovina on the last weekend of May. It will feature a time trial and granfondo / mediofondo in the city where the battle for the rainbow jerseys will take place in 2021.
Granfondo Dnipro Race in the Ukraine will be the 8th new event in the calendar with a 20km time trial and a 83 or 155km Granfondo on mainly flat roads with some 10 shorter hills.
Villars-sur-Ollon, located in the Alpes Vaudoises, near the UCI headquarters and the UCI World Cycling Centre, will offer the new Granfondo Suisse on 26-28 June. During the weekend, riders will have the opportunity to participate in a 9.9km mountain time trial (785m of elevation) and a tough 104km Granfondo comprising 5 climbs and finish on top of Col de la Croix (8.4km with an average gradient of 7.3%).
Riders from Eastern Canada and the North Eastern US regions as well as those who will have missed qualification in Vancouver will have a new destination to qualify for the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships. La Classique des Appalaches, in Victoriaville (Québec) will also host the national masters championships in one combined event.
The existing stopovers in the UCI Gran Fondo World Series, which include Amy’s Gran Fondo, Tre Valli Varesine, Bathust Cycling Classic, Cyprus Granfondo, Tour de Bintan, Tour de Brisbane, Schleck Granfondo, GF Rio de Janeiro, Cheaha Challenge Granfondo, Greek Granfondo, UCI GF San Luis Potosi, Tour of Cambridgeshire, Maraton Franja, Granfondo Ezaro, Cache Granfondo, La Leggendaria Charly Gaul and Niseko Classic are proven high quality-events with excellent organisation and are all confirmed in the 2020 UCI Gran Fondo World Series calendar.
For the first time in its history, the UCI Gran Fondo World Series will stop over in all 5 continents.
At its meeting in June, the UCI Management Committee also approved the official qualification system for the 2020 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Vancouver / Whistler (CAN). It should be noted that the percentage of qualified riders in each category has been reduced from 25% to 20% due to the increased number of qualification events. This measure will prioritise rider safety at the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships.