Where are all the decent early morning races disappearing to?

Not sure if it is me, but I’m finding that all the decent hour-long (ish) races are disappearing from the calendar and it’s now just saturated with sprint events. What’s going on?

I tend to ride before work, 6am - 8am in the morning (UK time). There used to be a decent choice, but now:

a) I’m seeing most races are now maximum 20 - 25km long; the classic 38 - 43km ‘hour-long’ events seem to have entirely disappeared
b) Loads of group rides are taking their place
c There is frequently lots of gaps in the day without any races at all
d) Lots of shorter 10km time trials, or sprint events are coming in
e) There are virtually no longer events - in fact, the XRS events are the only ones I can think of longer than 1 hour
f) There are fewer events up the Alpe than there used to be

To be clear, I’m not suggesting that there are fewer events overall, but for someone looking to get a good 1 hour hard effort in before work, I’m often seeing nothing suitable available whereas there used to be plenty of choice. Looking at tomorrow (Friday 18th) as an example (just showing races here) in BST:

6:00am - 17.6km ITT
6:05am - 18.9km race
7:10am - 22.5km race
8:00am - 23.3km race
8:05am - 33.2km race
8:30am - 19.7km race
9:05am - 4.4km race
9:30am - 23.6km race
9:45am - 15.7km race

So, from 6am to 10 am there is not a single hour-long race in the schedule.

Come on Zwift, please address this - not everyone wants to jump on for 30 minute races, or do stupid 4.4km sprint events (really?!); there used to at least be something in the diary. You’ve got a whole 1:05 hours without any races at all!

Where are the Innsbruckring 4 or 5 lap events? Where are the 3R Volcano Flat races?

It just feels like Zwift is really going backways now; I used to ride 7 days a week and there would always be an event for me, no matter what I fancied doing that day or time. It seems to me like Zwift is flooded with similar group rides, or sprint-length events and we’ve lost the longer-format events.

I agree. I start work early as well in USA, PDT. There just aren’t enough races that start at 4am. 4:30 is too late.

I wonder if it’s the fact that Zwift seem to be flooding the calendar with 50 - 60 minute group rides / podcasts that are just draining participants from other races too.

This is a hard time to find races. The North is going to summer and the South to winter, so many groups are riding outside.

Groups in the north is ending there racing to make time to ride outside and the South is still warm enough to not start there Zwift racing season.

Try to find a race 6am EST any time of the year. :frowning:

What I would really like to see is a battle Royale style racing module. where you log in the pic between 3 options Flat, Hilly or Crit then you start riding(warmup) once enough people of your level sigh up Zwift drop you in the starting pen and off you go.

I’m not sure you can blame Zwift per se. A lot of race/rides are hosted by external groups such as ZDR, DIRT etc…

As eluded to by Gerrie the North and South Hemispheres are at crossover point where outdoor riding is more accessible globally.
There are a few other sponsored events ongoing too at the moment, Olympic Virtual Series, GTCC, Pride On that are all designed to offer a more social ride.

With respect, I’m not sure I agree with your justifications on this (politely!)…

If the number of events had decreased, I would understand it. But looking at the calendar, if anything, it looks like there are MORE events now than ever! It’s the nature of the events that has changed.

We are now drowning in a deluge of 20 - 25km shorter rides, all clustered together.

I feel that Zwift can do something about it - by encouraging organisers to think of alternative routes, alternative distances or alternative times. There is plenty that Zwift could do to incentivise diversity in races, but I’m not seeing it.

What I can also see are dozens and dozens of Zwift-promoted Olympic social rides, podcast rides and more workout rides than ever before. I’m also seeing lots of 4k - 10k events that I don’t really understand the appeal of.

I get what you’re saying, but I’d prefer half the number of rides, more variety in event types and for organisers to be gently encouraged not to organise events on the same course, at the same distance, at the same time as others.

Hi @B_Bridges

I did not compare the amount of rides but I see your point. This has been talked about in some circles that I move in. The events use to be controlled by Zwift and they used to look at what you are talking about. To give you and example there use to be this 100km ride and that was very popular suddenly 2 others popped up within 10 min of the original so now there is 3 100km rides starting in 15min.

But it will be nice to see more 40-60km races in the week and 60km- 100km races over the weekend.

I’ve mentioned before about the odd distribution of events, because it’s similar on an evening (UK time). 7pm-8pm tonight there are 17 races. 8pm-9pm there are 5. Often it’s even more lopsided than that.

outdoors :wink: