The 2024 Great Exmoor Ride is taking place on Sunday 8th September 2024.
The Ride sets off from Silk Mills Park & Ride in Taunton (see map below) where there is an abundance of free parking and safe drop-off areas, and riders are able to depart between 8am and 9am (although registration opens from 7.30am for anyone who wants to arrive early).
There's no paperwork to bring - riders submit a 'Rider Details' form in advance as part of the entry process so on the day itself they simply have to report to the registration desk to sign in and collect their rider number, and then it's just a case of heading off to the start when they're ready to go!
Depending on final numbers, riders will set off in small groups approximately 1-2 minutes apart. There's absolutely no rush with the GER and anyone who prefers a more 'relaxed' start is welcome to join the start line nearer 9am.
The Ride finishes some 66 miles later by the sea in Blue Anchor near Minehead and it's hoped that riders will encourage family and friends to come along and help them to celebrate their achievement by cheering them across the line.
There's plenty of open space at the finish area and supporters are very welcome - the more the merrier! It's a very tranquil spot with a lovely, quiet beach literally yards from the finish and, importantly, there's lots of FREE parking available at or near the finish area too for people picking riders up.
There will be food and bar facilities available to everyone at the finish, and these are for the use of Ride participants and their supporters.
Riders need to be in Blue Anchor by 5.30pm latest (or 5pm if booked onto our transport service), after which time the event will begin to knock down.
It is anticipated - and hoped! - that the majority of riders will take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy a late Summer day out by the sea with family and friends after completing the Ride, and they will therefore be collected from the finish in Blue Anchor.
However, there is also an optional transport service available for anyone who needs it - this will operate in the afternoon between approximately 1.15pm and 5pm (inclusive) to bring riders and their bikes back to Taunton from the finish, and riders wishing to use the post-Ride transport service are welcome to leave a vehicle in the Park & Ride at the start. Parking for the day is provided free of charge, however please note that ALL vehicles must exit the Park & Ride by 6pm latest, after which time the gates will be locked.
The afternoon transport service back to the Park & Ride needs to be booked and paid for in advance, and this option can be found on the ONLINE ENTRY page.
NB we strongly advise riders to book the transport service at the same time as entering the Ride, however it can, if required, be booked separately at a later date. In any case riders should book at the earliest opportunity (and at the very latest two weeks before the Ride takes place), otherwise we may not be able to guarantee a place on the service.
The Ride is fully supported with clear directional signage, as well as comprehensive en-route medical and mechanical support from experienced providers. A recovery service is also available if needed, and riders are looked after every step of the way!
En route there will be a couple of official refreshment stops where riders will be able to replenish water bottles and make use of toilet facilities. There will also be food and drink available to purchase, will all monies paid going to support the local businesses providing the service. And of course there are also plenty of other appealing stop-off points on this stunning route for those of a more leisurely disposition.
The event is registered with British Cycling, cycling's governing body, and is being run in accordance with its technical regulations, and all signed-in riders benefit on the day from automatic third-party event insurance (provided by British Cycling) as part of their entry fee.
The entry fee effectively covers the cost of putting the event on and charity fundraising, while actively encouraged, is entirely optional. All riders will be asked to at least consider supporting our official Charity Partner, however they are also welcome to support other charities or causes if they so wish - or indeed they can simply participate purely for the personal challenge.
And please note that this is not a 'traditional' sportive where timing chips, energy gels, and time-based rider listings are the order of the day - one of the aims of the GER is to be inclusive and very relaxed; all types of riders & bikes are welcome and actively encouraged; the event is particularly supportive of newer/less experienced riders; and we really mean it when we say it's NOT a race! There is of course still more than enough to challenge (and delight) experienced riders, and we take the view that those who appreciate this can take care of their own timing and specific fuelling requirements - so the GER is probably not for anyone who thinks it's impossible to have a great day out on a bike without these things being provided.
It IS, however, most definitely for anyone (regardless of cycling experience) who wants the challenge - and enjoyment - of a great day out on a bike, on a great route, in a great event, and in the company of a great bunch of people!
Finally, all riders who participate in the Ride agree to abide by the Ride's terms and conditions of entry.
The start location is situated to the west of Taunton on the A3065 (Silk Mills Road). The venue postcode is TA1 5AA, and the Park & Ride is well signposted as you head west out of Taunton.
Please see the map below for the Silk Mills Park & Ride location (and to get directions if needed).
Please allow yourself 15-30 minutes to arrive, get sorted, sign in, and attach your rider number before setting off. (Riders are welcome to arrive from 7.30am onwards, but in any case should arrive no later than 8.30am if possible).
If you have any problems, or need any further help with directions, please let us know via email or phone and we'll be only too happy to help.
Silk Mills Park & Ride, Taunton TA1 5AA