REGGIE Ramble Gravel Grinder Cycling Event Coming to Toronto Area
12 Sep, 2019
Hoping to build on the momentum of the gravel cycling craze in North America, REGGIE – the upstart Canadian apparel brand renowned for its bold designs and top-notch craftsmanship – is launching a new gravel event that will challenge riders with three distance options over a mix of surfaces and terrain offering a truly unique cycling experience. The REGGIE Ramble will take place on September 28 in Warkworth Ontario, about 1.5 hours northeast of Toronto and just over three hours from Buffalo, NY.
Gravel events are quite common across the continent these days, but the biggest races are generally located in the Western US, with Kansas’ legendary Dirty Kanza topping the list. Jeff Wills, REGGIE’s founder and a former elite bike racer, has teamed with Superfly Racing, one of Canada’s premier race promoters, in hopes the Ramble will reach a similar level of renown – in part by bringing that level of event closer to the Northeast’s major population centers.
They’re confident that location, combined with the Fall setting and beautiful-yet-incredibly-demanding pro course, will attract a large contingent of top pros and elites, like the big US races: In fact the recruiting process is already underway to attract renowned pros including some former Kanza winners.
But the Ramble will also appeal to a much wider variety of riders, including gravel newbies. There are two shorter course options which share a common first loop and start/finish area with the long course: The finishing straight of all three will head right through the Cow Palace red barn at the historic Warkworth Fairgrounds. This base area will serve as the heart of the event for service and support, allowing fans to cheer riders as they head out on and return from each loop.
Along with the fun, spectator-friendly atmosphere where the whole family can spend the day, and the spectacular cycling around the Trent Hills area, the overall format of the event will be distinct in the genre, with a number of differentiating aspects making it a challenge for all levels of cycling enthusiast.
First, the three distinct loops are combined together for three distance options: All Ramble riders will take on the first loop of 65 km. Then, after returning to the Fairgrounds, longer-distance riders will head out on a separate second loop for the 130 km option. And the ultimate challenge adds the third loop for a monsterous 200 km total. Aside from the streets in and out of town, all the roads and trails are unique to each loop.
Second, the Ramble is decidedly heavy on gravel and dirt with minimal paved “connectors:” Approximately 70 percent of the route is gravel and dirt roads. And those roads are anything but flat! The hilly region means constant rollers, with each loop offering approximately 3300 feet (1,000 meters) of climbing, for a total of around 10,000 feet on the long course.
Finally, each loop will feature three to four “Ambush” sections which are especially adventurous (read: crazy). These sections will surprise riders with climbs, descents, water crossings, and extreme surfaces.
“REGGIE is all about having fun riding bikes, so we simply have to host a ride,” says Wills. “We wanted to have an event that mimics the rides I love to do with my buddies, and that’s where the name comes from: When the weekend ride starts at my house, we call them REGGIE Rambles, and my friends know they’re in for something they’ve never done before.
“Like those rides, the Ramble’s ‘curated’ circuit of roads will get even local riders to places they’ve never been before and challenges everyone’s idea of where they can ride bikes. We’ll get them to push their limits on distance, time, pace, mix of surfaces, destinations, etc. We want to build in a mix of fun, competition, challenge and accessibility so that more riders can participate. Then after their first REGGIE Ramble we hope riders will love it so much they’ll come back next year to push themselves to the next distance or a faster time.”
Registration is open now. Organizers have not set a limit on the event; they expect over 300 riders and think that number could climb as high as 1000 or more.
About REGGIE: REGGIE (Reggie Sports Inc.) is a Canadian brand, founded by the Wills Kids, and we create cycling gear that will make you grin and push you on your next ride. Bike riding is fun and awesome, and REGGIE is about keeping it that way through unique designs and pro level quality that stand out from the pack.
About SIMBOL Communications: SIMBOL formed to help brands tell truthful, authentic stories through exposure in a wide variety of media outlets, developing creative in the outdoor, cycling and fitness industries — as both industry professionals and competitive enthusiasts — the founders of SIMBOL have the all the tools to get powerful stories to the right audience.