At the beginning of the twentieth century, the prominence of road cycling competitions began to explode. Some major competitions draw tens of millions of people and are broadcast on television throughout the world.
James Moore, a British rider, won the first race that was formally documented on May 31, 1868, at Paris’ Parc de Saint-Cloud.
Paris-Rouen was the first city to city to compete on November 7, 1869. The winner, James Moore, rode 123 kilometers in 10 hours and 25 minutes. The organizers wanted to promote cycling and show that it was possible to go long distances on a bicycle.
Since their inaugural iteration, road cycling has been a part of the Olympic Games schedule.
Four types of events:
Road race is part of the Olympic programme.
The riders start together in a bunch. The courses are of varying distances (approx. 260 km for Elite Men in the UCI World Championships). Road races have several different formats: one-day races from one point to another (eg Paris-Roubaix or Tour of Flanders) or on a circuit, such as the UCI World Championships or stage races (eg Tour de France, Giro d’Italia or Vuelta a España).
Individual time trial is part of the Olympic programme.
The individual time trial is raced over 40-50 km (at the UCI World Championships and Olympic Games). The riders set off individually at regular intervals (1-2 minutes). The competitor completing the course in the fastest time is the winner.
The principle is the same as for the individual time trial but this event is raced by teams of a minimum of 2 riders and a maximum of 10 riders.
From 2019, the team time trial at the UCI Road World Championships will be raced in a mixed relay format reserved for national teams composed of three men and three women from the Elite and Under-23 categories. The event will get under way with the three men, who will then hand over the relay to the three women. The team’s final placing will be calculated based on the time elapsed when the second woman crosses the finish line. Both the men and women will complete one lap of an identical circuit.