Cycle Challenge - Chichester to Chartres

Cycle Chartres is an annual charity cycle ride organised and managed by the Fundraising Committee of the Rotary Club of Chichester Harbour. It was first organised in 2007 and has run every year since.

Each year a major beneficiary is chosen to receive funds raised by the cyclists taking part. This year’s ride will support The Sussex Snowdrop Trust. To date, nearly £100,000 has been donated to a variety of charities, including St Wilfrid's Hospice, Pancreatic Cancer UK and Canine Partners. Last year we raised over £10,000.

The ride takes place on the first Bank Holiday weekend in May. We start in Chichester on a Friday, and finish in Chartres on Sunday. The group returns on the Monday by coach. The distance ridden is around 160 miles, and the course in France is mostly on minor rural roads. Accommodation is in good hotels, and the ferry travel with Brittany Ferries. The ride is fully supported by volunteer marshals, who provide food stops, first aid and bike maintenance. Vans transport luggage and bikes where appropriate.

Cyclists have ranged in age from 12 to almost 80. We have had father and son combos, and even father, son and grandson on one ride. It is not a race, but a degree of fitness is required to enjoy it. It is great fun and we have many cyclists who have done all seven rides.

The ride is usually started by the Mayor of Chichester, and we have a Civic Reception in Chartres on arrival.