Cycling events in Toronto, 2013
Cycling events in Toronto for 2013 are still being announced as we enter into riding season, but there's already enough on tap to warrant a working list. Some of the more popular rides are quick to fill up, so planning ahead is a smart bet if you're keen on participating. The majority of the events listed below are for charity and non-competitive, so those interested in doing some racing should check the Ontario Cycling Association website for a variety of resources. Many of the events affiliated with Toronto Bike Month have yet to be announced at this time, but we'll provide an update when we have more information about this year's lineup.
Giro 2013 (May 26)
Formerly held in Corso Italia, the Toronto Giro (or Giro TO) will head up to Vaughan this year where there's country-like roads and it's easier to accommodate the 60 and 100km ride options. The pace at the front of the 100km ride is zippy, so if you're a hardcore cyclist looking to test his mettle outside of OCA-sanctioned events, this could be for you. All proceeds go to Villa charities.
Bike Month 2013 (May 27-June 30)
Bike Month's dedicated website just went live at the beginning of the month, so it's a little short on info related to this year's events, but you can always bank on Bike to Work Day (May 27th) and host of rides, workshops, and sales from local bike shops. More to come!
Ride for Heart (June 2)
This is the one where you get to ride on the DVP and the Gardiner Expressway. Cool! It's also far more hilly than you might notice when zipping along in a car. Last year witnessed 13,000 cyclists take part in the ride, the proceeds of which go towards heart and stroke research, and it's bound to sell out again, so make sure to register early. Each rider 18 and over must raise at least a $100 in donations in addition to the entrance fee ($50-$60, depending on when you sign up), which is one of the reasons why it's such a successful charitable event.
Ride to Conquer Cancer (June 8-9)
2013 sees new route options added to the ride, but the trek from Toronto to Niagara Falls is sure to be the most popular. It's certainly a challenge for an average cyclist to ride 200 kilometres over two days, but the whole point of this event is that it's difficult. Most will have to do some form of training to make sure they make it, but that should help to kickstart fundraising efforts in advance of the ride.
World Naked Bike Ride (June 15)
Naturally this event attracts more spectators than participants, but it's worth mentioning if only so as to warn you in advance when the peloton of naked people is coming to a street near you. The ride is designed to foster awareness of oil dependancy and the need to protect the environment, but also tends to send a positive message regarding body image issues. The prudes don't like it much, but I admire the folks who participate. It takes, er, balls, to get out there like that.
Provincial Criterium Championship (July 1)
You probably won't make to France to watch the Tour this year, but if you want to get up close and persona with some extremely fit folk clad merely in spandex, this is your chance to do so right here in Toronto. The Provincial Criterium Championship (hosted as part of the CHIN picnic) brings out Ontario's best crit riders to the CNE grounds for some hyper fast racing. There's a long history of bike racing at the Ex grounds, and this race typically brings out thousands of spectators, which is rare indeed for a Canadian bike event.
With more events to be announced — in particular, those related to Bike Month 2013 — we'll update this post with additional rides and races in later this month. In the meantime, please feel free to share events you're aware of in the comments section.
Photo by CurlyCam in the blogTO Flickr pool