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Welcome to Gran Fondo USA >> Top 33 North American Spring Classics for 2017

Top 33 North American Spring Classics for 2017

In Europe the cobbles of Northern France and Belgium and the race Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on February 25th, marks the start of the Spring Classics. But you don't have to travel that far to enjoy a huge wealth of Classics here in North America

Every year we pay homage to the Spring Classics.

Luckily, America and Canada have thousands of miles of gravel and dirt roads to create a uniquely North American challenge in the form the Gran Fondo and Gravel Grinder. A lot of these races can be tackled on a range of bikes, but over the years Gravel and Endurance bikes have slowly been taking over. Wider more treaded, robust tires with disc brakes are now becoming the norm.

New endurance bikes have blurred the lines between traditional road (Gran Fondo) and off-road (Gravel Grinders), and so have many events, that now feature large sections of both tarmac, gravel and even worse terrain whereby running and hiking, with your bike on your back, is all part of the early season fun.

For all of these rides, it's good to do a bit of research, check out the courses and even contact the organizers direct for advice.

Top 33 North American Spring Classics for 2017

About the North American Classics

Barry-Roubaix in Michigan is by far the Largest Gravel Race in North America, featuring 3,500 riders.

The Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride, in California, is the most unique one day cycling event in the country, was created as an homage to the storied history of bike racing in Belgium—a wonderful country considered to be the epicenter of the hardest one-day bike races in the world. “A tribute to the beautiful—and equally grueling—races staged in Belgium during the early spring, this year’s route will once again be different than all of the previous years with some new and sinuous gravel, dirt, and rocky sections, and more climbing than rural Belgium could offer, promising more fun, more pain and more opportunity for excuses than ever before. Though the course will be shorter this year, but we hope to have at least 36 miles of dirt sections, more than 13,000 feet of climbing and headwinds no matter which direction you ride.

For riders who like both Road and Gravel, the course of the Rouge Roubaix in Louisiana, is one of the best in America. Coined the Deep South’s Most Unique Race, it is on par with the likes of California's Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride in terms of its unique and challenging course. Sunday’s Road Race is an opportunity for riders to battle it out for cash prizes, custom trophies, category champion's jerseys and most importantly - Rouge Roubaix Glory! Saturday's fast growing Gran Fondo, is a great opportunity for first timers or non-racers to tackle the race course with no time limits and fully supported stops and mechanical support from Mavic. This race is a classic test of man and his machine vs. the terrain and elements.

Starting the Classics Season off in North America, is the Sourland Semi-Classic. The Spring Classics are not all about the Monuments! In tribute to the second tier classics, the Sourland Semi-Classic (SSC), is a 62 mile ride that explores the Sourlands Region of Central New Jersey. It offers a gentler way to prepare for the main spring events, with some of the roads having been used by the Hell of Hunterdon.

The Dirty Devil is California’s Premier and Most Challenging Road Bike Ultra Century, which includes up to 28 miles of packed dirt roads! Route options available: 84 miles, or tackle the whole 127 mile course.  Once again the Dirty Devil with feature a King of the Mountain (KOM)/Queen of the Mountain (QOM) Challenge on uphill dirt sections!  All packed dirt roads are challenging, but road bike friendly!

The 2017 Boulder Roubaix Road Race is only conducted every other year and 2017 marks the next edition. One of the Most Hallowed Races in the Western US. Held the day before the real ‘Queen of the Classics’, the French race that goes from Paris to Roubaix. A 19 mile (30k) loop with 43% paved roads & 57% unpaved roads in North Boulder County. Neutral support is unlikely. Please bring a pump and spare tube. Do a “bolt check” the day before please. We will have designated broom wagons doing laps if you need a lift back to the finish.

The Rasputitsa Spring Classic, Rasputitsa is Russian for “mud season", which gives you a pretty accurate preview of this 45-mile race for bragging rights in northern Vermont. In keeping with the Russian theme, the highlight of the course is “Cyberia,” a Class IV road that a former race participant described as “a scary backwoods where at any time a Yeti or Bengal tiger may jump out of the woods, bludgeon you with a blunt object, and either leave you for dead or drag you back into the woods for a nice little Saturday brunch.” It features Yetis, maple syrup shots and, of course, Cyberia.

Paris to Ancaster, "Canada's Spring Cycling Classic", is a 70km ride that does everything it can to pump up the hardness factor to Paris-Roubaix levels. There are a number of mud sections that see most riders shoulder their bikes.

Fish Rock is named after Fish Rock Road near Boonville in California and is put on by Bike Monkey, which runs a raft of top events including Levi's Gran Fondo. 28c tires are recommended.

The Tour of Battenkill Gran Fondo allows amateur cyclists to experience the professional course of 68 miles of rolling terrain on both dirt and paved roads as they travel through the world famous Battenkill Valley. Set in early spring, the race starts and finishes in the scenic village of Cambridge, New York and courses through covered bridges, family farms, and rural villages along the many challenging backcountry roads that traverse Southern Washington County, New York. The 2016 edition played host to over 3,000 amateur and professional cyclists from throughout North America and dozens of nations worldwide.

Top 33 North American Spring Classics for 2017

So here’s our rundown in chronological order with a bit about each ride, the history, the homage, where and when. We’ve added in the European classic pro races for inspiration!

Whatever you do, make sure you add at least one of these to your Bucket List this spring. Get out and ride!

You can watch the Classics races LIVE on Gran Fondo Guide at our Pro Cycling Classics LIVE STREAMING race dashboard throughout the season. Tune In, Zone Out!

Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
Feb 25 2017 - Ghent, Flanders, Belgium

Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, previously Omloop Het Volk, is a one-day cycling race in Belgium, held annually in late February. It is the opening event of the Belgian cycling season, as well as the first race of the year in Northwestern Europe, and holds significant prestige because of it. In 2017 the race will be included in the UCI World Tour for the first time. Until 2016 it was ranked as a 1.HC event of the UCI Europe Tour.

The race starts and finishes in Ghent, Flanders, and addresses the hills in the Flemish Ardennes, marking the start of the cobbled classics season in Europe. Due to its early calendar date, it is characterized by often cold weather, coming as a contrast to the early-season stage races in the Middle East and Southern Europe. The day after the Omloop, Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne completes the opening weekend.

 
Feb 26 2017 - Kuurne, Belgium

The 69th edition of the Belgian classic will be held on Sunday, the 26th of February, 2017. As always, Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne is on the calendar on the ninth Sunday of the year, the day after Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. Together the two races comprise the Flemish Opening Weekend.

‘KBK’, as the race is often abbreviated, is perfect for sprinters. Mark Cavendish, Alexander Kristoff and Elia Viviani were on the podium in 2016.

 
Feb 26 2017 - Hopewell, New Jersey, USA

Sourland Semi-Classic kicks off the North American Spring Classics and they're not all about the Monuments! In tribute to the second tier classics, they present the Sourland Semi-Classic (SSC), a 62 mile ride that explores the Sourlands Region of Central New Jersey. It will offer a gentler way to prepare for the main spring events While some of the roads have been used by the Hell of Hunterdon, the HoH can’t get to all the places we’d like to.

There is much more excellent riding to be had in the Sourlands; the SSC is an attempt to showcase it. If the HoH is the Ronde; the SSC is Het Nieuwsblad; it will take in some of the same roads, but it will hit them differently and go other places as well. Of course there will be some unpaved roads to go with the famous Sourland climbs and flats!

 
Mar 04 2017 - Middlefield, Ohio, USA

Kick off your 2015 riding season with the inaugural Road Apple Roubaix.  This gravel road ride will test riders with plenty of gravel, some pavement, potential mud and perhaps even some snow and ice!   This is an opportunity to tour some of the less travelled roads out in Amish country…JUST BEWARE OF THE ROAD APPLES!  There are two route options- tentatively 20& 40 miles.  Exact routes and distances will be forthcoming.

Cyclists of all kinds and performance levels (no license required) that want to start their season with a real challenge and experience the scenery of Amish country while avoiding the steaming road apples. Geauga County is the closest Amish Community to Cleveland, Ohio. With an Amish population of just over 14,000 it is the 4th largest Amish settlement in the world.

 
Mar 11 2017 - St. Francisville, Louisiana, USA

A classic 103 mile road race that covers the good, the bad, and the ugly of the Feliciana’s. The race starts in St. Francisville, LA and travels north and west through the back roads of West Feliciana Parish and Wilkinson County, Mississippi. 

You will encounter a constantly rolling terrain, and a few climbs that will test all racers. The road surfaces will vary greatly. You will encounter chip and seal, sandy gravel, smooth as glass asphalt, and some roads that are just plain bad. This race is a classic test of man and his machine vs. the terrain and elements. It would be unfair to attempt to predict what type of weather to expect for the Rouge Roubaix. 

You should come prepared to battle 80 degree heat and Louisiana humidity (it’s worse than Houston). You should also come prepared to expect temperatures so low that your water bottles will freeze. And then again, if the cycling Gods are with us, we will get one of those perfect spring like days where it will be tough to break a sweat.

Amateur riders get the chance to ride the same roads the day before the professionals do on Saturday 14th March. Stay and watch the Pro's on Sunday and make a weekend of it.

 
Mar 11 2017 - Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA

The Land Run 100 is a solo, self supported, non-stop, 100-mile-long bicycling endurance challenge on the gravel and dirt roads surrounding the site of the Oklahoma Land Run of 1889. This year we have the Half Run for those that wish to ride the route, just not 100 miles of it.

The 750 places for the 2016 event sold out in just 25 hours after registration opened on November 1.

Who said anything about unique? We love the Dirty Kanza 200 but it only comes around once a year. The Land Run 100 is a training mile stone race for those who dare attempt the DK200. Complete the LR100 and you are on the right track for the DK200. DNF the LR100, you still have time to fix what went wrong before the DK200. Flint Hills we are not, but gravel, hills, and red dirt we got. Careful on those rickety bridges by the way, we are taking you on the far back roads.

 
Mar 11 2017 - Boonville, California, USA

Seven years ago, a group of us set out on a ride we conjured up while looking at the California Gazette, before crazy things like heat-maps. It led us to Fish Rock Road, and it is the place that inspired us to create this unique event from Boonville, California. 

There's only one route for Fish Rock. It's 72.4 miles and 9,670 feet of elevation gain. The record is somewhere just under five hours.

This ride is not a joke. Every crazy thing you've heard about Fish Rock Road is probably true, or in some way related to something that is true.

 
Mar 18 2017 - Grass Lake, Michigan, USA

Kick off the cycling season with Epic Races and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for a truly amazing gravel bike race: the inaugural Waterloo Grit and Gravel!

This amazing adventure will take you through the wilds of Lower Michigan’s largest park, where pristine forests, rolling glacial terrain, and sparkling lakes provide a breathtaking backdrop for the cycling experience of a lifetime.

The Wolverine: a rugged, two-loop 100K course that winds through Waterloo’s more than 20,000 acres. Note: 100K participants must complete the first 50K loop by the 12:30 PM cut-off time.

The Black Bear: a powerful 50K course that condenses the best that the Wolverine offers into half the distance (one loop).

The Massasauga: a mighty 10-mile non-competitive ride perfect for both those new to bike racing and those built for speed. 

 
Mar 18 2017 - Redlands, California, USA

Experience what we collectively consider some of the best roads and trails in the Eastern San Bernardino Valley, linked together in one full day of riding. Good trails, back roads, great scenery, fantastic people! This is not your typical ride. The course goes on and off road and even hits some single track. Yes, some people on road bikes can do this. YOU MUST HAVE SKILLS!!!!

A CX bike is ideal, but mountain and road bikes both work too. There are three courses available: English century (100 miles), metric century (62 miles) and metric half century (30 miles).  What's new this year is the 100 mile century ride. It's still being hammered out, but will add on at least two additional segments to the metric century route. The second of which, if all goes according to plan, will have a wee bit of elevation gain on it!

 
Mar 18 2017 - Milan, Italy

Milano-Sanremo by NamedSport has been part of Italian popular culture since 1907. It is indelibly linked to some of the great moments in 20th century Italian history. For instance, the 1946 Milano-Sanremo took place the day after King Victor Emmanuel III, compromised by his earlier support of Mussolini to play any part in post-war Italian politics, announced his intention to abdicate. 24 hours later, Fausto Coppi, that giant of Italian sporting history, launched a 150km solo attack that led to victory in the 37th Milano-Sanremo by no less than 14 minutes.

Given the huge period of time before the arrival of the second-placed rider, the radio commentator Niccolò Carosio fell back on a time-honoured broadcaster’s ruse, introduced by this immortal piece of sports commentary: “First across the line, Fausto Coppi. And now, while we wait for the other riders to finish, here is some light music!” In the collective memory, the birth of the modern Italian Republic is intimately associated with Fausto Coppi’s extraordinary performance that day.

 
Mar 19 2017 - Ephrata, Washington, USA

The Gran Fondo Ephrata course is designed to give riders a glimpse of some very remote, out of the way parts of central Washington. The course will for the most part go out Baird Springs Rd and return on Palisades Rd. It is designed to give riders a glimpse of some very remote, out of the way parts of central Washington. In the spirit of remote and rustic central Washington, much of the route is primitive gravel roads. There will be at least one well stocked aid station at approx. the half way point as well as a few sag wagons for additional assistance.

You will receive a super cool limited Gran Fondo Ephrata t-shirt, a police escort through town, a well thought out, and well marked course to ride, a well stocked aid station to refuel at mid ride, and a hot meal to refuel post ride. We will also post the times of all finishers for bragging rights. With so many variable course conditions it is hard to say what’s right or wrong. Road, cross, or mtb, any one will work, but all will have a disadvantage at some point. Personally I would use a cx bike with some beefy road tires. There will be lots of climbing so plan accordingly. There will be a few sag wagons and an aid station, but it’s a good idea to be somewhat self sufficient.

Weather is always something to consider this time of year. I would love to say it’s going to be sunny and 55 degrees, but it could just as easily rain or snow. Bring on the adventure baby!

 
Mar 22 2017 - Roeselare, Belgium

Held in late March, the event traditionally marks the start of the Flemish Cycling Week, which also includes E3 Harelbeke, Gent–Wevelgem, the Three Days of De Panne, and the Tour of Flanders.Dwars door Vlaanderen has always been contested on a Wednesday, four days after Italy's monument race Milan–San Remo and a week and a half before the Tour of Flanders.

Since 2012, a women's edition of Dwars door Vlaanderen is held on the same day as the men's race, starting and finishing on the same location, of approximately 130 kilometres distance. Both events are organized by Flanders Classics.

 
Mar 25 2017 - Harelbeke, Belgium

E3 Harelbeke,  is an annual road cycling race in Flanders, Belgium. The race starts and finishes in Harelbeke, covering 203 kilometres, mainly in the Flemish Ardennes.

First raced in 1958, it is one of the more recently founded one-day classics, but has developed into a highly prestigious and desirable event. It is on the UCI World Tour calendar, as the competition's first cobbled classic of the season.

Belgian Tom Boonen holds the record of victories with five wins, trailed by cycling icon Rik Van Looy who won four times.

 
Mar 25 2017 - Alpine, California, USA
 
The Dirty Devil is California’s premier (and most challenging) road bike ultra century, which includes up to 28 miles of packed dirt roads! Route options available: 84 miles, or tackle the whole 127 mile course.  Once again the Dirty Devil with feature a King of the Mountain (KOM)/Queen of the Mountain (QOM) Challenge on uphill dirt sections!
 
All packed dirt roads are challenging, but road bike friendly!
 
 
Mar 25 2017 - Blawenburg, New Jersey, USA
2017 Hell of Hunterdon

In tribute to the Northern European Spring Classics join us for the 7th Annual Hell of Hunterdon, a 82 mile Belgian themed ride in Hunterdon County, NJ.

The Hell of Hunterdon is the Mid-Atlantic’s Premier Spring Classic & Mixed Surface Ride; it is the ideal way to open your cycling season.

The challenging course features 19 sections of dirt, gravel, and hardscrabble roads (covering approximately 15% of the course) as it winds its way through scenic farmland and country towns in New Jersey’s Sourland Region.

The ride is followed by a Post Ride Celebration that includes hot food, cold beer, and door prizes in a festive indoor/outdoor environment.

Mar 25 2017 - Hastings, Michigan, USA

Kick off your 2016 cycling season on April 16 with The Founders Barry-Roubaix Killer Gravel Road Race, the largest gravel road race in the world! 

Like the classic it’s named after, Barry-Roubaix will test riders against (80%) rolling gravel roads, pavement, one mile of rough two track, rocks, sand, mud, and possibly snow and ice as you traverse the scenic roads of Barry County.  We offer three race lengths to challenge riders of all abilities. The 22-mile CU Link“Chiller” has approx. 1200 feet of elevation, the 36-mile Smith Optics “Thriller” climbs approx. 2200 feet. The 62-mile Sram “Killer” you can expect approx. 3800 feet of elevation.

Over $32,000 in awards cash and prizes. Kick off the race season with Over 3,500 of your fellow cyclists. Cyclocross, Mountain, Road, Single-Speed, Fixed gear, Fatbikes & Tandem bicycles are welcome in any category 

 
Mar 26 2017 - Statesville, North Carolina, USA

The Love Valley Roubaix is a challenging course of mixed surface racing. Iredell and Wilkes Counties put forth their best gravel roads and toughest climbs to test your mettle and pit you against your buds in an all out push to finish this 50 mile Roubaix. Prepare for the uncertain spring weather of North Carolina, the sharpness of fresh laid gravel and the climbing that the Brushy Mountains hold close to its vest.

If you have never visited, Love Valley North Carolina is step back to earlier times. This quaint little western town is at the base of the Brushy Mountains and surrounded by beautiful winding dirt-packed roads. The course is approximately 50 miles with 60% +/- packed dirt roads. Bring your CX or road bike with thick wall tires and enjoy this scenic event.

 
Mar 26 2017 - Reading, Vermont, USA

An incredibly scenic gravel road circumnavigation of the Reading, Vermont area featuring a tucked-away, destination sugarhouse at full boil.  

Climby, narrow, beautiful rural dirt roads with THREE SECTORS of “Vermont Pave” (unmaintained town roads).  Depending on the weather, the road conditions could range from frozen solid with sand spread on them to all-out mud season! 

The beauty of this circuit is that, if at any time you feel like calling it a day, you can simply turn and head back to the start/finish. 

Either way and any way, this ride will be an amazing and challenging adventure!

 
Mar 26 2017 - Gent, Belgium

Gent-Wevelgem is an international WorldTour cycling classic that attracts the best riders every year. The race follows a unique route through the area that was the setting of the First World War 100 years ago. This is why the subtitle ‘In Flanders Fields’ is now added to the classic’s name. The metaphor of the riders as fighting soldiers, armed with their bike, is never far away. The race thus wants to contribute to a fitting commemoration of the Great War and keep the memory of the conflict alive with future generations. As a tribute to the heroes and 600,000 people who fell in the Westhoek region.

The event is often called the sprinters' classic due to its flat finishing terrain, its early-season date means riders are often tested by wind and rain, as well as several climbs, including two ascents of the steep and fully cobbled Kemmelberg. As a result, few editions of Gent–Wevelgem actually end in a bunch sprint – often the winner comes from a small group of escapees.

 
Apr 01 2017 - Castell, Texas, USA

The Castell Grind is comprised of two separate endurance gravel races, the Full Grind 100K and Half Grind 50K.  Both races will begin in Castell following remote gravel roads through the rolling Texas Hill Country in the middle of nowhere.   You can expect amazing views, wildlife, cattle guards, minimal traffic, adventure and a gravel challenge worthy of bragging rights.  The Full Grind will follow a figure 8 course intersecting through the center of Castell at the half way point.  This will be a mandatory check point for all racers continuing on the 100K course.  Racers may also use this as a refueling and support stop if they choose to.  The Half Grind racers will complete the same north loop course as the Full Grind racers and finish their race in Castell.  The Full Grind racers will complete the south loop returning to Castell and the finish line.  Post race festivities will take place at the Castell General Store.

Ride what you got, just stay away from skinny road tires.  They won't work out there.  Cyclocross or mountain bikes will do great.  The best size tire for this course will be 34c or larger.

 
Apr 01 2017 - The Dalles, Oregon, USA

The Gorge Roubaix has expanded for 2017 into the Oregon Epic Grinder Series showcasing the most amazing roads in the state of Oregon. The Oregon Epic will take riders on roads through the Columbia Gorge, Bend, and Mt. Hood regions. Courses will be a mix of gravel and pavement and maximize scenery and challenge. Each event will include a huge post race party with great food and beer. Come challenge yourself against these epic courses or challenge yourself against your fellow riders. Either way experience what Oregon Epic is all about. 

No racing license no problem. This is a mass start event that is open to everyone. You choose the bike we provide the course and support to maximize your challenge and fun. We will have great mechanics on course to keep you rolling and well stocked aid stations to keep you fueled. We are offering timing to everyone on this ride with prizes for the top men and women finishers.

We have two courses for you to choose from. The Big Grinder is for anyone looking for the ultimate challenge. This course is the exact same one that the Pro/Elite men's field will tackle earlier in the day. Ride fast and compare your finishing time with the pros or take your time and enjoy the food, scenery, and amazing roads. The choice is yours. Those of you that did not have a stellar winter training season we have the Short Grinder which is 50 miles that still provides lots of challenge with a little less suffering.

Everyone who registers for the Gravel Grinder receives a ton of cool stuff. So sign up and ride. Then enjoy the post race party and festivities at Clock Tower Ales afterwards.

 
Apr 02 2017 - Antwerp, Belgium

Antwerp will set the new stage for the next five years of the Tour of Flanders.

What’s more is that cycling fans can prepare themselves for the Muur van Geraardsbergen’s comeback, included in the Tour’s route for the first time since 2011.

It is likely that the battle will once again be settled on the Oude Kwaremont and the Paterberg, before the champion of ‘Flanders’ Finest’, just like last year, will be crowned in Oudenaarde.

 
Apr 05 2017 - Antwerp, Belgium

The Scheldeprijs is a cycling race in Belgium which starts in Antwerp and finishes in Schoten. The event, ranked as a 1.HC race on the UCI Europe Tour, features mostly sprinters on its roll of honour, as it is held on all-flat roads over roughly 200 kilometres.[1]

First held in 1907, it is the oldest still-existing cycling event in Flanders, Belgium's cycling-crazed northern part, notably six years older than the Tour of Flanders monument race. The race had its only interruptions during both World Wars and celebratedlde its 100th edition in 2012. German sprinter Marcel Kittel holds the record with four wins.

 
Apr 08 2017 - Sonoma, California, USA

Skaggs! No other description needed. Or is there…Wait…let’s start at Lake Sonoma, add Sweetwater on our way to King Ridge, Tin Barn and finish via Skaggs to Lake Sonoma. Truly the most epic 100 miles in Sonoma County.

If you’ve done King Ridge but not Skaggs this is a must. Nothing like heading north at King Ridge/Tin Barn junction to feel the tingles of epic adventure run up and down your spine.

Remember, these are rides and not races! Be prepared. Pre ride when possible and be conservative in your efforts. The last 20 miles are the hardest and usually in full sun.

 
Apr 08 2017 - Boulder, Colorado, USA

Only Conducted Every Other Year- Next Edition 2017

One of the most hallowed races in the western US. Held the day before the real ‘Queen of the Classics’, the French race that goes from Paris to Roubaix. 

A 19 mile (30k) loop with 43% paved roads & 57% unpaved roads in North Boulder County. Neutral support is unlikely.

Please bring a pump and spare tube. Do a “bolt check” the day before please. We will have designated broom wagons doing laps if you need a lift back to the finish.

 
Apr 09 2017 - St. Jacobs, Ontario Canada

Join the hundreds of cyclists in the 5th annual Steaming Nostril cycling event.  From the seasoned racer to the first time rider, this is the ride for you!

Check out the swag for 2017 – a new kit design for 2017 with a classic hardcore look.

New venue too – Waterloo Rod & Gun Club just outside of St.Jacobs on Bo De Lane. That means a new route with a few changes – will the mud wall still be the challenge? will the stairs test your legs at the finish? or will there be a new twist to make memories?

Guys keep your beard growing for our “Get-Your-Beard-On” charity event contest! $1 will be donated for every rider who finishes the 2017 course to the charity of the Best Beard’s choice.

Cyclocross, mountain bikes, single speeds and hybrid bikes are recommended. Plus for an added bonus we’ve added a new Fat Bike category ! The 69km Steaming Nostril course consists of 80% farm and dirt roads, 15% rail trail and 5% paved road. The course is a loop route that starts and ends at Woolwich Community Centre in St Jacobs. If you really want to ride in this spring classic but are challenged by the distance of Steaming Nostril we have set up the new, shorter 35 km “Runny Nose” event.

 
Apr 09 2017 - Harrisonburg, Virginia, USA

The Harris-Roubaix is another great, fun cycling event brought to you by SVBC.  It takes place every Spring on the same day as the Paris-Roubaix.

The group leaves from the center of Harrisonburg at noon for a casual ride to a family farm about 7 miles to the north. From the farm there will be a 10-15 mile loop marked for your enjoyment.

You are more then welcome to ride the loop once or more, and there is a informal 3-lap race that will crown the Champion of the Harris-Roubaix.

 
Apr 09 2017 - Compiègne, France

On Sunday the 9th of April, 2017 the bunch sets off for the 115th edition of Paris-Roubaix, the third of five Monuments on the cycling calendar. Also known as the ‘Hell of the North’, Paris-Roubaix is one of the oldest and one of the most difficult one-day races with riders having to endure a daunting gauntlet of cobbled sectors before the finish in the Roubaix Velodrome.

A perfect blend of positioning, power and tactical nous are required if a rider is to lift the famous cobble-stone trophy awarded to the victor, not too mention a large slice of luck. Given the conditions, mechanical issues are unavoidable in Roubaix, the timing of which can be the difference between winning and losing.

Mathew Hayman is title holder. In 2016, he oupowered Tom Boonen, Ian Stannard and Sep Vanmarcke on the line.

 
Apr 12 2017 - Overijse, Belgium

Held annually in Flemish Brabant and in Walloon Brabant, Belgium. Since 2005, the race has been organised as a 1.1 event on the UCI Europe Tour. 

In 2011, it was upgraded to a 1.HC event. Edwig Van Hooydonck holds the record for most wins in the race with four between 1987 and 1995. In recent years, Zaventem was the city of start, in 2008 however, Leuven became the place of start.

In 2010 the fixed date of the Brabantse Pijl shifted from the Sunday before the Ronde van Vlaanderen to the Wednesday before the Amstel Gold Race. 

 
Apr 15 2017 - Point Pleasant, Pennsylvania, USA
Fools Classic 2017

The 9th Annual Fools Classic is a challenging cyclosportif which emulates the conditions of the Northern European Spring Classics.

Despite being founded long prior to the Revolutionary War, Bucks County doesn't have much in terms of cobblestone roads, but due to its rural nature, there are many unsealed roads of dirt and gravel, lending perfectly to a tribute to the Ronde Van Vlaanderen.

The Fools Classic is a challenging ca 76 mile ride held in bucolic Bucks County, Pennsylvania with 27 unpaved roads.  It is one of the first rides in the US that emulates the conditions of the Northern European Spring Classics.

The conditions and date of the Fools Classic make it a perfect tune up/training ride for those going to the Tour of the Battenkill.
 
Apr 16 2017 - Maastricht, Netherlands

The 52st edition of the Amstel Gold Race will be held on Sunday the 16th of April, 2017. With narrow roads, dozens of hills and constant twisting and turning the race opens the trilogy of three Ardennes Classics. Founded in 1966 it is the only classic in the Netherlands, while their neighbours in Belgium have plenty.

In recent years, the finish was 1.8 kilometres after cresting the short and steep Cauberg. The 12% sections of this hill result in an exciting finish where timing is important.

In 2016 Enrico Gasparotto took the win with Michael Valgren and Sonny Colbrelli finishing in second and in third.

 
Apr 19 2017 - Marche-en-Famenne, Belgium

Edition 81 of La Flèche Wallonne – The Walloon Arrow in English – is held Wednesday 19 April 2017. The race dates back to 1936 and is marked by steep Ardennes hills. As of 1983 the finish is at the top of the Wall of Huy, a 1.3 kilometre climb with a steepest section at 17%.

In 2016, Alejandro Valverde took his fourth win, outpowering competition in the uphill sprint at the Wall of Huy. Julian Alaphilippe finished in second place, while Daniel Martin was third.

 
Apr 22 2017 - Waldport, Oregon, USA

Welcome to the Oregon Coast Gravel EPIC! presented by Oregon Coast Bank!

It's remote, it's mountainous, it's an ass kicker, and it's the kick off of the Oregon Triple Crown Series. Complete all three of the Oregon Triple Crown Series events and you’ll be honored with an exclusive Pactimo finisher's jersey and recognition of your extraordinary efforts. To register for or learn more about Oregon Triple Crown Series go to oregontriplecrown.com

The Oregon Coast Gravel Epic is a gravel cycling endurance event that features the seriously stout climbs found deep in the coastal mountains of the Siuslaw National Forest The Abomination route is 60 miles long with 6,500 ft of climbing. While the Son of Abomination is shorter at 37 miles, it has a chest-thumping 4,500 ft of climbing.

 
Apr 22 2017 - Cambridge, New York, USA

Preview ride America's largest one-day Pro/Am cycling race and Gran Fondo. Racers compete over 68 miles of rolling terrain on both dirt and paved roads as they travel through the world famous Battenkill Valley. Set in early spring, the race starts and finishes in the scenic village of Cambridge, New York and courses through covered bridges, family farms, and rural villages along the many challenging backcountry roads that traverse Southern Washington County, New York.

The 2016 edition played host to over 3,000 amateur and professional cyclists from throughout North America and dozens of nations worldwide. 

 
Apr 22 2017 - East Burke, Vermont, USA

Rasputitsa is Russian for “mud season”—which gives you a pretty accurate preview of this 45-mile race for bragging rights in northern Vermont. In keeping with the Russian theme, the highlight of the course is “Cyberia,” a Class IV road that a former race participant described as “a scary backwoods where at any time a Yeti or Bengal tiger may jump out of the woods, bludgeon you with a blunt object, and either leave you for dead or drag you back into the woods for a nice little Saturday brunch.” Need more recommendations?

“Total sufferfest,” pronounces Olympian Lea Davison, who pre-rode the course in February as a fundraiser for Little Bellas, the nonprofit she co-runs with her sister Sabra. Make it through the race, though, and you’ll be privy to poutine, maple-syrup shots, Vermont beers, and live music.

 
 
Apr 22 2017 - Lenoir, North Carolina, USA

This is the most scenic and challenging dirt road ride you will do this year!

There are two route choices: 100 mile dirt road ride with 8000+ feet of climbing. The ride starts and ends in downtown Lenoir, NC and travels up to the Blue Ridge Parkway and down through beautiful and scenic Wilson’s Creek Gorge. 60 mile dirt road ride with 4500+ feet of climbing. The ride starts and ends in downtown Lenoir, NC and travels through beautiful and scenic Wilson’s Creek Gorge.

New for 2017!!! We will be offering competitive ‘Open/Age Group’ AND non-competitive ‘Cyclo Sportive’ classes for both distances.

Bring your race face OR bring your camera and a picnic!

 
Apr 22 2017 - Bagley, Wisconsin, USA

Crush Gravel. Crush Road. Repeat.

The Dairy Roubaix is a one day unsupported gravel grinder starting and ending at the Hugh Harper Group Camp at Wyalusing State Park in Southwest Wisconsin.  Running each year since 2011, this event has become a Wisconsin cycling tradition and a chance to reunite with old friends in a relaxed atmosphere.

Entry is free to all, but limited to the first 350 participants.  We do accept and encourage donations to support the event and it's organization's good works. 

Starting 2016, this organization is Vernon Trails Org - a group of folks building single track trail networks in and around Vernon County, Wisconsin.

 
Apr 23 2017 - Pittston, Pennsylvania, USA

This is the ride you've heard about.

This is the ride you've been waiting for!

This is 103 miles of mostly untraveled roads through Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming counties in Northearstern PA that will show you things you haven't seen, teach you things about yourself, and challenge your bike to keep you going when you can't see where the road and gravel and mud end, and civilization begins.

Are you not sure if you're ready for all 103 miles? We have shorter options of 50ish miles and 75ish miles as well.

 
Apr 23 2017 - Liege, Belgium

The 103rd edition of Liège–Bastogne–Liège will be held on Sunday the 23th of April, 2017. La Doyenne – as the race is nicknamed – is one of the oldest classics on the cycling calendar, and it is the fourth Monument in the seaon. Liège–Bastogne–Liège is the last of the Spring classics before the Grand Tour season starts. Wout Poels is title holder. 

The race is about 250 kilometres long, setting out from Liège towards Bastogne, taking a U-turn and heading back to Liège via some of the toughest climbs in the Ardennes, including La Redoute, which is often where the real action starts.

 
Apr 29 2017 - Montpelier, Vermont, USA

Onion River Sports presents the 5th Annual Muddy Onion Spring Classic this April.

Come explore 34 miles of Vermont’s most beautiful, scenic and iconic dirt roads. Celebrate early Spring in true Vermont style and enjoy this fully-supported ride on the remote back roads of Central Vermont. Stick around afterwards for our famous post ride Barbecue. Speaking of famous, we are super excited to announce that the good folks at the Alchemist Brewery have made it possible for us to keep riders "lubricated" at the end of the ride--complimentary with registration! As for the ride itself, expect no less than our chocolate-covered bacon, maple syrup shots, early season burning legs and quite possibly a little gravel magic along the way.

 
Apr 29 2017 - New Hope, Pennsylvania, USA
The Fleche Buffoon

A "Spring Classic" for those who don't like riding on dirt roads! The 3rd Fleche Buffoon is a tribute to the Ardennes Classics (Fleche Wallone, Amstel Gold Race & Liege-Bastogne-Liege).

The challenging course features multiple steep climbs over its route.

Along the way there will be miles of country roads, scenic farmland and quaint river towns. In true fashion, there is even an authentic European windmill.

 

 
Apr 29 2017 - Los Gatos, California, USA

Our eight year of hosting the annual homage to the Spring Classics of Europe! This fine race is happening Saturday, April 29th, right here in NorCal! Here’s to hoping for grey skies, some bits of rough road and please, oh please, rain. Long miles, big climbs and screaming descents will punctuate a full day in the saddle complete with great company and top-notch support.

The full serving (standard route) is 116 miles and ~10,000 ft featuring about 22 miles of dirt roads. Express route is 70 miles and 5,000ft and has just a few miles of dirt roads. 

Cost includes post-ride buffet (local farm-to-face, mostly organic with vegetarian options), all the craft beer you care for and first class transportation for you and your bike via chartered luxury coach. Also included are four fully stocked feed zones along the route; mechanic support on course and SAG wagon.

 
Apr 30 2017 - Newburg, Wisconsin, USA

Inspired by Spring Classics like Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Flanders, Cheesehead Roubaix is a 63-mile ride that features almost 10 miles of dirt and gravel. The ride will test your fitness with rough road conditions and about 2,000 feet of climbing.

Cheesehead Roubaix is free of charge, but please consider making a voluntary contribution to the Newburg Fire Department to show your appreciation for the use of its facility. There will be a donations jar in the parking lot prior to the ride. Last year we collected $1,044. Thank You! According to the fire department, portable toilets will be available at the park—that’s a new amenity for 2016—and it looks like there will be beverages for sale at the concessions stand when the ride is done.

There will be a mid-ride rest stop courtesy of our friends from BELGIANWERKX. Please let us know you plan to attend so that we can ensure there’s enough food and drink for everyone.

Moroder Photography will be on hand again to preserve your Cheesehead Roubaix memories.

Cheesehead Roubaix is designed for self-sufficient cyclists. The rest stop will be your only support. The ride uses only open public roads and park paths. You are responsible for your own safety and conduct, and you are expressly not exempt from Wisconsin traffic laws. Represent the sport well. Please visit the Cheesehead Roubaix website and print out your own copy of the cuesheet and map. The website also offers a data file for Garmin GPS devices.

 
Apr 30 2017 - Paris, Ontario, Canada
Paris to Ancaster

For over a century the roads of northern Europe have been home to the toughest bicycle races in the world.

The most famous of these, Paris to Roubaix, takes place each spring over brutal cobblestone roads that have been preserved in their historic condition for over 100 years.

Inspired by this classic race, the Paris to Ancaster has taken place for the past twenty years over the roughest farm lanes, trails and gravel roads we can find.

Combined with unpredictable spring weather and the largest field of riders assembled in Canada, it has become a classic race experience for everyone from average riders to Canadian Olympians.

The Paris to Ancaster has taken place for the past nineteen years over the roughest farm lanes, trails and gravel roads we can find. Combined with unpredictable spring weather and the largest field of riders assembled in Canada, it has become a classic race experience for everyone from average riders to Canadian Olympians.

 
May 20 2017 - Cambridge, New York, USA

The Tour of Battenkill Gran Fondo allows amateur cyclists to experience the professional course of 68 miles of rolling terrain on both dirt and paved roads as they travel through the world famous Battenkill Valley.

Set in early spring, the race starts and finishes in the scenic village of Cambridge, New York and courses through covered bridges, family farms, and rural villages along the many challenging backcountry roads that traverse Southern Washington County, New York. 

The 2016 edition played host to over 3,000 amateur and professional cyclists from throughout North America and dozens of nations worldwide.

The course features rolling countryside, covered bridges, and direct passes through several small villages. There are many challenging climbs - total climbing is 4029 feet - with a maximum gradient of 17%. 39/25 gearing is recommended. Racers should also carry a spare tube and pump/C02 cartridge.

For racers and non-racers, the Tour of the Battenkill Open is a mass-start, gran fondo-style event.

 
May 21 2017 - San Marcos, California, USA

Join the most unique one day cycling event in the country by signing up for the Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride presented by SPY, rolling through San Diego, CA on April 24, 2016. A gravel grinder with the perfect mix of dirt and tarmac to keep things interesting, the BWR has become the "must ride" event for cyclists searching for a first-class experience unlike anything else. 

Known to provide riders with an incredibly memorable day on the bike, the Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride presented by SPY will take its riders on a ronde through North County San Diego, where it will clatter through agrarian hamlets and the Ardenne-like hills—not over classic mountains per se, but rather a never ending string of ups and downs—along single track climbs, sandy trails, and roughly paved roads carved through inland San Diego’s beautiful rural and sometimes forested backcountry. 

Offering two challenging routes in two different distances, the full BWR course will cover 144 miles, 11,000 ft. of vertical and requires your inner hardman or hardwoman to shine in pursuit of the finish line. After you arrive, you'll be met with a custom brewed bottle of Belgian Ale from The Lost Abbey, a full Belgian Feast and joyous merriment from ride staff and fellow riders. 

The second route, the Cervélo Belgian Wafer Ride presented by SPY, tops out at 68 miles and takes riders up and down a shortened course, while still including a few of the BWR's most famous dirt sections and iconic climbs. A perfect option for those entering their first gravel grinder, the Wafer ride delivers the challenge and excitement of the Waffle ride in a fun-sized package.

A fully supported ride with CHP escorts, a multitude of support vehicles and feed stations dotted throughout, register for the 2017 Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride presented by SPY before it's completely sold out.

 

What do you think?

What do you think our guide to the Top 33 North American Spring Classics?

Do you think another event is worthy of the list or do you have any feedback? 

We are continually updating our list based on feedback from everyone. 

If so email us at marketing@granfondoguide.com at any time.

More Gran Fondos and Gravel Grinders

The above is a list of early season challenges that pay homage to the european Spring Classics. There's hundreds more events throughout the year. Were constantly confirming the dates and details of thousands of events across the United States, Canada and beyond.

Here's some direct links to our comprehensive events calendars:

2017 U.S. Gran Fondo events calendar
2017 Canadian Gran Fondo events calendar
2017 U.S. Century Rides calendar
2017 U.S. Gravel Grinder calendar

 

 
Tag: northamericanclassics
 
Feb 15 2017 - NEWS: Top 33 North American Spring Classics
Apr 10 2016 - EVENT: The Darby Roubaix
Jan 15 2017 - EVENT: Rocheport Roubaix
Jan 27 2017 - EVENT: Source Endurance presents Belgium Waffle Ride, The Survival Camp
Feb 26 2017 - EVENT: Sourland Semi-Classic
Mar 04 2017 - EVENT: Road Apple Roubaix
Mar 11 2017 - EVENT: Land Run 100
Mar 11 2017 - EVENT: Fish Rock
Mar 11 2017 - EVENT: Rouge Roubaix Classic Race and Gran Fondo
Mar 18 2017 - EVENT: Waterloo G and G Gravel Road Race
Mar 18 2017 - EVENT: Redlands Strada Rossa Ride
Mar 19 2017 - EVENT: Gran Fondo Ephrata
Mar 25 2017 - EVENT: Hell of Hunterdon
Mar 25 2017 - EVENT: Barry Roubaix
Mar 25 2017 - EVENT: The Dirty Devil
Mar 26 2017 - EVENT: Vermont Overland Maple Adventure Ride
Mar 26 2017 - EVENT: Love Valley Roubaix
Apr 01 2017 - EVENT: Castell Grind
Apr 01 2017 - EVENT: Gorge Roubaix Race and Grinder
Apr 08 2017 - EVENT: Skaggs! and Super Skaggs Gravel
Apr 09 2017 - EVENT: Steaming Nostril
Apr 09 2017 - EVENT: Harris-Roubaix
Apr 15 2017 - EVENT: Fools Classic
Apr 22 2017 - EVENT: Oregon Coast Gravel Epic
Apr 22 2017 - EVENT: Tour of the Battenkill Spring Preview Ride
Apr 22 2017 - EVENT: Rasputitsa Spring Classic
Apr 22 2017 - EVENT: The Bootlegger 100 Proof Dirt Road Ride
Apr 22 2017 - EVENT: Dairy Roubaix
Apr 29 2017 - EVENT: Muddy Onion Spring Classic
Apr 29 2017 - EVENT: NorCal Spring Classic
Apr 29 2017 - EVENT: The Fleche Buffoon
Apr 30 2017 - EVENT: Paris to Ancaster
Apr 30 2017 - EVENT: Cheesehead Roubaix
May 20 2017 - EVENT: Tour of the Battenkill Open Gran Fondo
May 21 2017 - EVENT: The Sixth Annual Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride
Jun 24 2017 - EVENT: Hilly Billy Roubaix
 
Tag: top10outwest
 
Jan 01 2017 - NEWS: Top 15 Toughest Gravel Grinders out West
Feb 15 2017 - NEWS: Top 33 North American Spring Classics
Feb 17 2017 - NEWS: Lance Armstrong to ride Fish Rock
Feb 12 2017 - EVENT: Rock Cobbler Ride
Mar 11 2017 - EVENT: Fish Rock
Mar 18 2017 - EVENT: Redlands Strada Rossa Ride
Mar 25 2017 - EVENT: The Dirty Devil
Apr 01 2017 - EVENT: Gorge Roubaix Race and Grinder
Apr 08 2017 - EVENT: Skaggs! and Super Skaggs Gravel
Apr 22 2017 - EVENT: Oregon Coast Gravel Epic
Apr 29 2017 - EVENT: NorCal Spring Classic
May 21 2017 - EVENT: The Sixth Annual Cervélo Belgian Waffle Ride
Jun 03 2017 - EVENT: Lost and Found Sierra Nevada Gravel Grinder
Aug 19 2017 - EVENT: Cedar City Fire Road 100
Aug 26 2017 - EVENT: Ochoco Gravel Roubaix
Sep 23 2017 - EVENT: Gran Fondo Winthrop