Can someone translate ....

degsy_103 Posts: 33
edited August 2008 in Road beginners
Being new to all this, so been reading a few websites, articles and blogs.

I see Audax and Sportives mentioned but not sure I fully understand what they are.

My understanding is that a Sportive is what I would call a touring ride, 60-80 miles, with no racing, just you against you own personal best etc..

Audax - I think this is 100 miles plus, but not sure.

Is this even close to correct....?


  • Bronzie
    Bronzie Posts: 4,927
    degsy_103 wrote:
    Is this even close to correct....?
    No :wink: ... t=12547820

    Audax comes from French for audacious as in "I'm going to ride an audacious distance just to prove I can". Entry level events start at 100km right up through "standard" distances of 150, 200, 300, 400 & 600km to the mighty Paris-Brest-Paris (1200km).

    To complete an audax all you have to do is ride round the course (navigating yourself with the aid of the organisers route instructions) within the minimum and maximum times (which are pretty lenient) allowed. You prove you've ridden the route by getting your brevet card stamped at petrol stations and cafes on the route. There is no winner just a list of finishers. If you are successful, you get awarded brevet points which can be used in season long competitions for riding the furthest / hilliest etc routes.

    Therefore Audax is intrinsically non-competitive.

    Sportives have boomed due to the popularity of events like Etape du Tour on the continent. French and Italian sportives are races, usually over tough terrain - there is a winner with podiums, dancing girls, the works.

    In the UK, sportives are not allowed to be official races, although you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference in some of them. They are intrinsically much more competitive as you are given a finishing time, although there is no official winner (the results are supposed to be presented in alphabetical order only to avoid claims that it's a race!).

    The biggest difference is that Audaxes will cost you £4 to enter and sportives £25+ :wink:
  • Many thanks, this bike lark is more complicated tha i thought !!