Velo Birmingham or Wiggle Le Tricolore? A tricky conundrum!


I’ve been booked on the Velo Birmingham for a few months now. This takes place on 24th September on closed roads, starting in Birmingham City Centre and going out into the Staffordshire countryside for a total of 100 miles.

I originally wanted to do this ride as the original route headed off into Herefordshire and it’s somewhere I’ve wanted to cycle for a while but never have. I’m guessing the organisers had issues with Herefordshire Council with getting the closed roads, so switched a month or so ago to Staffordshire instead.

Now, I’ve cycled the roads of Staffordshire many times and don’t get me wrong, it’s a lovely place to cycle and all that, but it’s not what I booked Velo for. Weekends are a scarce commodity and I want to choose my rides carefully to maximise my enjoyment, fun and memories. Especially the memories!

It was only when I realised the Wiggle Le Tricolore was the last of 3 French sportives they run every year and I’d missed the first two, that I started to question if I really wanted to do Velo. They are both on the same date!

The idea of starting in Dover, taking a ferry to Calais (with breakfast and rider briefing on board), then riding 80 odd miles around the French countryside and returning to Dover later in the day (with dinner on board) really appeals to me. It’s exactly the stuff great memories are made of and I knew I REALLY wanted to do it.

My conundrum is I’d already paid £65 to do Velo and really did not want to waste this. It’s also too late to transfer the Velo ticket to someone else, so I can’t even let someone else have the enjoyment of the ride.

You only get one life and you have to go with your gut instinct and my gut was telling me 100% to go to France and ride there. I just HAVE to do this ride!

I’ve spent a few weeks umming and ahhing over it and in the end, I thought sod it, you need to do what you feel is right and what will create the best memories going forward. At the end of the day, you look back on memories and they are the thing that lasts with anything you do!

So, I’ve decided to not use my Velo ticket and instead have entered the Le Tricolore ride and absolutely can’t wait. I can’t put into words how excited I am for this ride and experience.