Shortive - the Idea

Stretton Shortive logo
Rideventures has helped organise a running race for a couple of years.  It starts at 10.30am but all the runners warm up first (off the course) and then when they get going its immediately intense.  The whole event is over by 12.30pm.

So we thought "Why not do that for cyclists?"

Lets make it short so people can do it in the morning and then get on with their Sunday.  Lets tell them to warm up before the start.  Lets make it super-intense - so they don't miss out on all the usual sportive "pleasure".

Somebody said, "Call it a Shortive" so we did.

When we started talking to people the response was great.  Loads of people really like the idea of it being over quickly - you can do it and still do other things on the Sunday.  One comment was about how a regular sportive can get boring by the afternoon as you slog around completing the miles.  Others just love the hills...

Our first go is in Church Stretton this April.

We added in an extra wrinkle - bail outs.  Because the Stretton course is a multiple figure of 8 cyclists will keep coming back to near the Start/Finish line as they go around.  This means they can bail out and finish early if they've had enough - we'll have signs asking "Had Enough?" and showing them how to take the easy way back.

Event Timing

To time or not to time, that is the question.

Rideventures has been asking participants about event timing recently.  And the results have been surprising.

A survey for the upcoming Ride Clywd got 44% wanting timing, but then 56% didn't want it or weren't bothered.  Another poll on Facebook was more negative - 55% didn't want electronic timing, 17% weren't bothered (so 72% total) , and just 28% wanted it.

Timing is usually a big thing, isn't it?

Its long been that sportives are electronic timed.  You get a chip, you put it on your bike or helmet, you set off going past/over the timing point.  And when you come back you go over/past the same point and you get a time.  All the results are published online.

That's the way, isn't it?

Least it was the way things started out 15 years ago - individual times and being like a proper continental sportive was the way for an event to be.

How come less than half the participants want it now-a-days?

Garmin, Strava, apps on your phone, GPS tracking services - people can have so much information - their path, their heart-rate, their power, how they did on particular hills.  Much more info than a mere "time".  If you are into performance and knowing how you went then you'll have a device and be tracking all this info.  Won't you?

I guess, one thing that's missing from all this individual tracking is online results.  Without event timing there'd be no published list of times.  Some people see that as a good thing - they don't want their times published.

For Ride Clwyd we're heading towards what feels like a radical change - no timingWhat do you think?