Red Kite Ride 2018

Red Kite Ride is now over for another year.   Official times are listed in this document –  Marlow Red Kite Ride 2018 Results v2

Our 2019 event will be run on Sunday 1 September – registration will open in March 2019.



3 September 2018

Marlow Red Kite Ride charity cycle ride most successful yet, despite traffic chaos caused by A404 road closure

660+ cyclists enjoy riding in the Chilterns

The annual Marlow Red Kite Ride sportive took place this weekend raising record amounts for local charity Wheels For All. This popular event, which is rated as one of the top ten sportives near London, is a regular fixture in the Marlow calendar and attracts over 700 visitors (riders and their friends) to the area. This year’s ride is dedicated to the memory of founder, ‘tour de force’ and former Chair of Marlow Riders, Rod Woodland, who sadly passed away in April.

The Ride took place despite the closure of the A404 which was announced at extremely late notice, having been twice postponed. As a result all three routes, 50, 80 and 100 miles were redesigned to avoid the expected traffic bottlenecks, and route signage and marshalling plans adjusted accordingly.

Event Director, Colin Lavis commented: “The Red Kite Ride has been very successful this year despite traffic chaos in Marlow. Now it its 7th year, the event has sold out yet again, which is a great achievement in what has become an extremely crowded market. We have been overwhelmed with positive feedback from participants, many of whom travel great distances, and take part year after year.”

Cllr Alex Collingwood, Vice Chairman, Improvement and Review Commission at Wycombe District Council and District and County Councillor for Marlow commented; “In these days of increasing congestion and reliance on cars, cycling in all its forms should be encouraged and celebrated. Cycling fosters a more healthy lifestyle on every level, reducing pollution, increasing fitness, and even improving mental health. The Marlow Red Kite Ride is a premier event, organized by enthusiasts and volunteers, raising money for a local based charity. It is unfortunate that the A404 road closure caused such disruption to the residents of Marlow, however, I’m delighted that the Red Kite Ride went ahead and was so successful.


“Having taken part in this years event i would encourage all local residents to sign up for next years event when details become available.”



Red Kite Ride – the friendly sportive

The Red Kite Ride, which is run by Marlow Riders aims to raise money for cycling related charities. This year the nominated charity is Marlow Wheels for All, part of the Cycling Projects initiative. Wheels for All, based at Bisham, provides adapted bikes for disabled children and adults. Early indications are that monies raised this year will exceed previous years donations. The raffle which is run on the day by Marlow Riders’ Chair Chris Heath has raised in excess of £3300.

Chris Heath, Chair of Marlow Riders added; “Once again, we are expecting to raise a significant amount for Wheels for All. To date the Red Kite Ride has raised over £50,000. I’d like to thank Colin and his team, and the 100 + volunteers from Marlow Riders that help to organise and run this, our showcase event, that spotlights Marlow and the beautiful countryside that we are lucky enough to have on our doorstep.”



Red Kite Ride 2018

The Red Kite Ride (RKR) sportive gives you a taster of the Chilterns, a top UK cycling destination. Beautiful rolling countryside, home to the graceful Red Kite, provides challenging climbs rewarded with sweeping descents.

In 2017 we were featured in Cycling Weeky’s Best Sportives near London

For 2018 we have routes across three distances, 50, 80 and 100 miles, each with well stocked feed stations and toilet facilities. All routes take you through quintessential old English villages and countryside, filming locations for Midsomer Murders, Vicar of Dibley, Lewis, Miss Marple, Jonathan Creek.

Riders cross the River Thames twice, passing the finish line of the internationally renowned Henley Royal Regatta, and again at the end of the ride as they return to Marlow across the iconic Grade I listed Marlow Bridge.

The entry fee for 2018 is £30, and for this you get:

  • Three great routes with clear signage and marshals at key stages
  • Well stocked feed stations and toilet facilities
  • Full electronic timing
  • Free parking nearby
  • Event village with food, drink and entertainment, so you can relax and celebrate at the end of the ride with friends and loved ones
  • Routes available for GPS systems
  • A rider gift for all finishers
  • All proceeds to charity

The sportive is not a race. It is a personal challenge to complete the course and do the best you can. Riders must wear a helmet and follow the Highway Code at all times.

50 mile course – one feed station

Perfect for first timers, two challenging but achievable climbs with enjoyable descents and plenty of beautiful rolling countryside.

80 mile course – two feed stations

All the attractions of the 50 mile course with the added challenge of a loop of the rolling Oxfordshire Plain with its many picturesque villages.

100 mile course – three feed stations

Ideal for those looking to break the ‘century’ for the first time as well as those looking to enjoy a day out in the Chilterns. The 100 mile route visits many of the same points of interest as the 50 and 80 mile routes, plus the stunning grounds of Eythrope – the last of the Buckinghamshire Rothschild houses to remain in Rothschild hands.

All routes start and finish at the Marlow Sports Club. Finishers receive a rider gift which provides an unusual and practical memento of the day. There will be a range of refreshments and a barbeque where friends and family can cheer the intrepid riders as they return.

Riding for charity

The Red Kite Ride has so far raised over £40,000 for charitable causes in the six years that it has run. Our headline charity for 2018 is Marlow Wheels for All, a fabulous initiative based at Bisham Abbey.  A nationally recognised programme it provides cycling for children and adults with disabilities and differing needs, using adapted cycles.

We do not expect you to raise sponsorship, although you may wish to do so, either for our chosen charity or for your own choice. If you would like to give an extra donation you will have the opportunity to do so when you enter. This has the added advantage that the charity can claim a tax refund using the ‘give as you earn’ scheme.

We will send a full briefing pack by email to all entrants about a week before the event.

Start times

The start for each route is open for a set period and riders can start at any time during that period. For safety, we send riders off in groups roughly 2 minutes apart.

  • 100 miles – start time: 7:30 to 8:30
  • 80 miles – start time: 8:00 to 9:30
  • 50 miles – start time: 8:30 to 10:00

About Wheels for All

The Wheels for All initiative is a nationally recognised programme that embraces all children and adults with disabilities and differing needs, to engage in a quality cycling activity. By using specially adapted cycles, the activities are both physically and mentally stimulating and above all fun for everyone involved.

The Red Kite Ride supports the local branch based at the National Sports Centre at Bisham Abbey, where they run events on Saturdays from Spring to Autumn between 11am and 2pm.

More info: http://cycling.org.uk/wheels-for-all/

For a blow by blow account of the fun we had at last years Red Kite Ride, check out our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/marlowredkiteride

Photos of last year’s event are available from SportivePhoto.

Video of the Start 2017

Marlow Riders

The Red Kite Ride is hosted and run by Marlow Riders. For more information about Marlow Riders visit our website: www.marlowriders.org.uk