The world of sports provides us with a huge number of all kinds of championships in all kinds of sports. One of the most spectacular and popular types of competitions are bicycle races. Its peculiarity is that, along with the physical preparation of the athlete, it requires high skills in cycling and coordination of movements. Also, such competitions are often held in picturesque places on the planet, which allows you to get unsurpassed aesthetic pleasure from watching cycling. Let’s learn more about the history of cycling and what competitions are held today.
The History of the Emergence and Development of Cycling Competitions
Bicycle racing competitions became known to the world in the 19th century.
The invention of the world’s first bicycle is usually credited to Carl von Dreiss, an inventor from Germany. The first prototype consisted entirely of wood.
The first cycling competition was held in 1869 in France. At that time, bicycles did not have a modern aerodynamic shape and were made of wood, which did not allow them to develop sufficient speed. In this regard, the maximum tournament distance for bicycles of that time was 2000 meters.
Cycling developed rapidly and soon bicycles began to be made of metal and more advanced design solutions were used, which made it possible to develop greater speed and lengthen racing distances up to 120 kilometers.
Already in 1900, the International Cycling Union was founded, which functions to this day and monitors the holding of international cycling competitions. In the same period of time, cycling was included in the program of the Olympic Games. Initially, competitions were held only in contests on a cycle track. Since 1912, road racing has been added to the program of the Olympic Games.
Since then, many different types of cycling competitions have appeared and are still appearing in accordance with the development of technology and the emergence of new trends in society.
Let’s take a look at the most popular types of cycling in the modern world together.
Modern Types of Cycling Competitions
Nowadays, there are many types of championships held according to various regulations and rules.
Basically, cycling competitions are divided into the following types:
- Individual contest on the road – an Olympic type of competition, where the rider alone overcomes the distance in order to get ahead of his rivals.
- The group contest on the road is an Olympic sport where different teams compete, led by a captain. Often the team provides the necessary conditions for the captain’s finish.
- Multi-day contests are a type of marathon, during which cyclists cover considerable distances. Conducted in both professional and amateur formats. They are often held in picturesque places, which makes their viewing more spectacular.
- Sprint is a rivalry over short circular distances. Athletes strive to cover a circular distance as quickly as possible.
- Criterium is a road circular contest, which is often held along the streets of the city.
- The pursuit race is an Olympic sport in which the opponents start from opposite sides of the track. The winner is the cyclist who catches up with his opponent faster and shows the best time.
- Git is a type of time trial contest on a cycle track. You can start from a place or on the move. No special tactics or coordination is required to win. It’s all about muscle strength and endurance.
- Elimination race – during such events, the athlete is the last to complete the lap to be eliminated from the race. This continues until there is only one winner left.
- Madison is a circular team endurance race. The first race of this format was held at Madison Square Garden in New York, which is how it got its name.
- Cyclocross is a contest on bicycles over rough terrain with obstacles.
- Mountain biking – riding bicycles over rough terrain. It has a huge number of varieties. Special bicycles with a reinforced frame and shock absorbers are required to participate.
- Trick competitions are one of the youngest types of tournaments. Basically, athletes compete in a variety of tricks. The most popular type of bikes for such championships are BMX bikes.
- Each separate type of competition has its fans and its own characteristics. Try watching different competitions to find the one that works best for you.
The Most Popular Cycling Competition in the World
The most popular cycling events among spectators are:
- The Tour de France is the most prestigious race in the world. It has been held since 1903. Is a multi-day road contest. Racers compete in speed and endurance. In addition to the main prize, participants compete for the nominations of the best sprinter, the most successful young rider, and the first-class mountain biker.
- The Giro d’Italia is the Italian version of the French rivalry. It has been held since 1909. Lasts for three weeks. Racers also compete for several nominations.
- The Vuelta a España is a popular Spanish stage event. Unlike its competitors, it is held in autumn, not in spring, which attracts lovers of the autumn landscape. Such races require more endurance and resistance to weather conditions.
- Birkibeiner is the largest marathon in the world, held in Norway. The number of competing athletes reaches 18,000 people.
- Liège-Bastot-Liège is a one-day race that has been held since 1892. Held in the vicinity of Luxembourg and is considered one of the most difficult races in the world due to the large number of ups and downs. It is also one of the most conservative races. Only in 2017, women were allowed to participate in the race. It is very popular due to the picturesque route.
Choose Your Favorite Competition and Enjoy the Beauty of Cycling
As you can see, the world of cycling provides a huge selection of championships for every taste. If you are a connoisseur of pure academic sports, you will enjoy the classic Olympic-format track. If you like to enjoy beautiful views along with athletic competitions, then you can choose a multi-day road contest for yourself. For the youngest audience, mountain bike and BMX are suitable. Choose the type of racing for yourself and indulge in the pleasure of watching the most beautiful and spectacular sport!