Rules of the Ride
When you line up at the start of the Prudential RideLondon sportives, chances are you’ll be eager to get the challenge underway, but before you do, we want to make sure you’re aware of a few essential ‘rules of the road’ that you’ll need to follow to be safe on the day.
Prudential RideLondon is working with Continental Tyres for a safe ride and our simple motto for everyone to remember is: Look, think, communicate.
While we make every effort to prepare and warn the residents of London and Surrey, as well as the spectators, about the vast peloton that will be coming their way, we ask that you, as a participant in the sportive, respect and follow some important rules of the road during the event.
Obey the Marshals
The entire route of the Prudential RideLondon events is managed by marshals who will secure the route and manage vehicle and pedestrian movements across it. Please follow their instructions at all times during the sportive.
While the route is mostly traffic-free, you do need to be aware that you might be directed to slow down or stop due to pedestrian crossings or to allow emergency vehicles access. There are many busy locations along the route so it is critical that you obey the directions from the marshals.
Additionally, each wave of riders will be accompanied by two Continental Tyres Rider Safety Captains from the Start Line all the way to the Finish Line of the course to help keep you safe at all times. Please listen to and follow instructions.
It’s NOT a race!
Remember: IT'S NOT A RACE, and you should not compromise your own safety – and that of the other cyclists and spectators around you – by riding the sportive as if it was a race.
Some of the more rural areas along the route lack suitable pavements but pedestrians still have a legal right to use the road to move to and from their property on foot. Please keep this in mind and respect people who need to move around on foot while the roads are closed to traffic. Remain vigilant at all times.
A Safety Car and two motorcyclists will precede the event to ensure that road closures are in place and pedestrian crossing-point marshals are aware of the arrival of the event. Please note that the Safety Car cannot be overtaken.
The emergency services are still required to attend incidents along the closed roads during the event, so be prepared to expect emergency vehicles operating under blue lights at any time along the route.
Please familiarise yourself with the three examples below when you might be directed to slow down or stop by our marshals on Ride Day to help the movement of emergency vehicles:
- Emergency vehicles will travel on the ‘normal’ (ie left-hand) side of the road where possible so please be aware that they may appear behind you. Be prepared to pull over and let them pass on your right.
- Emergency vehicles will try to travel in the direction of the ride but this will not always be possible. Therefore, they may be travelling towards you. Stay alert, be aware and stop if necessary.
- There are also contingency crossings in place along the route for the provision of vehicle access across the road in the event of emergencies. If a vehicle needs to cross the route, you must slow down and in some cases stop.
Please make sure that you keep looking around as you ride as there will be signs at various points along the route to inform you about where you are and what is ahead of you further up the road. Caution signs will be in place for narrow sections, steep descents, uneven surfaces and sharp corners.
Continental Tyres Rider Safety Captains will also be in position to indicate hazards and provide you with a warning in certain potentially dangerous locations, so please heed these warnings. Please do watch out for uneven road surfaces as these are a key hazard along any sportive route.
To ensure you’re aware of your surroundings, please do not wear music headphones. Do not take or make mobile phone calls while you’re riding, and do not take photos.
Consider the safety of those riding with you, and be aware that the cyclists around you will have varying levels of ability.
Try to maintain a predictable cycling line on the road – don’t swerve suddenly. If you need to stop or change direction, please indicate your intention to other riders.
If you notice potential obstacles or dangers ahead of you, let your fellow riders know.
If space is limited, or you cannot see clearly ahead, slow down. Cycle at a sensible speed – remember, it's not a race. Maintain control of your bicycle at all times and be aware of the variable quality of the road surface.
Be courteous and patient to other event participants, road users and pedestrians crossing the route. If you encounter horses and riders, take care, slow down and pass wide. If you need to get off your bike on hilly sections of the route, always walk on the left allowing as much room as possible for riders to pass to the right.
Repair punctures or other mechanical issues off the road where it is safer for all participants. Keep to the left-hand side of the road when it is available, allowing others travelling more quickly (including emergency and event vehicles) to pass on your right.
Please do not drop any litter along the route. We are guests of the communities we pass through and dropping litter, especially gel wrappers, is not an appropriate way to say thank you. Keep litter in your pockets until you can place items in a rubbish bin.
Please use the toilets provided at regular intervals along the route; urinating in public is not acceptable.
When riding up one of the hills you will encounter on your route, please keep to the left-hand side of the road so that those riders travelling more quickly can pass to your right. Please also make sure you approach descents on narrow roads with care and in control.
Dress appropriately for the weather conditions, bring basic tools, spares – such as inner tubes – and pack food and full water bottles, which can be replenished at the Hubs/Drinks Stations. Please note that we do not provide cups or bottled drinks so you will need to bring your own drinks bottles to the sportive.
You must use a roadworthy and permitted bicycle. The wearing of helmets is compulsory, and the helmet must be in good condition, comply with EN 1078 standards and be worn properly at all times while cycling.