Herman Nekkers


CycloWorld, The Rules

Every cycling fanatic probably knows The Rules van Velominati. A beautiful set of unwritten rules that every righteous cyclist has to live by (well, sort of). However, the lists lacks rules about gran fondos. Hence we've created CycloWorld, The Rules.

Photo: Alpen Challenge

1. A sportive is not a gran fondo

Some organizers call their event a gran fondo. A gran fondo is a one-day event that meets the following criteria:

  • Joint start
  • Sign posted route
  • Time registration over at least 50% of the route
  • Classification

Everything else is a sportive. Events that do not 100% meet all requirements are carefully assessed by our team of specialists. If it says gran fondo in our calendar, it is a gran fondo.

2. A gran fondo is a one-day outdoor sports event

Zwift gran fondos, Strava gran fondos, they are great. But they are not a gran fondo. So don't call them as such.

3. The Marmotte is once a year

If you ride the route of the Marmotte you didn't ride the Marmotte. Make no mistake, riding the same course is a lot of fun with friends. Call it Tour de Marmotte, Marmotte loop or whatever, but never The Marmotte. This title is only for the official event.

4. You can only wear a gran fondo shirt if you have ridden it

No discussion. One exception: you may start the event in the shirt.

5. Always ride the longest distance

This rule always applies, however if there is an ultra fondo you may deviate from it.

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6. Excuses do not count

The official time counts, the rest is secondary.  

7. A gran fondo is never ridden as a sportive

Whatever goal you set, you go for it. Whether your goal is to achieve a good classification, to ride for a certain time (e.g. gold) or to finish. Freewheeling can only be done in your own time.

8. Fare-beating is out of the question

Organisers put in hunderds of hours preparing an event. Often the event takes place on the public road. So yes, legally you have the right to ride along with the participants. CycloWorld, The Rules goes beyond the law on this point and strongly forbids fare-beating.

9. Some women are faster

You'll have to accept that. If necessary, have a chat, maybe something beautiful will happen...

10. Respect the people of the organisation

Supply people, signalmen, officials, they work for you in their spare time. If things don't go as you want, that's a pity, but don't ever take that out on these people.

11. Only the official result counts

Your medical statement not valid, time-measuring chip not fitted properly? It doesn't matter: not in the ranking = not ridden.

12. Enjoy the surroundings

No matter how hard the effort, keep your eyes open. Coming back without having seen anything of the surroundings is really not possible.

13. Whoever crosses the line first is the winner, whoever sets the best time is the fastest, whoever finishes highest in his category is the best


14. Those who have real talent are pros

Give it your all, but don't take yourself too seriously. Even if you ride a top classification, you're still an amateur.

15. Appreciate someone's effort

Some people train hard just to finish. Contempt for one's performance times says a lot about one's own mentality.

16. Coming home unharmed is the most important goal

Whatever your goal, finishing safely is top priority by far.

17. At the start the bike is shiny and polished

The most important rule in this list.

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