Well I have done it, I have entered my first cycling sportive event. Originally called cyclosportives but now more commonly just known as Sportives. This link will tell you all you need to know about them and more if you are interested.
The one I have entered is on 15th August, the Southern Sportive event at Woodcote near Reading. I have opted for the 95k mid route and aiming for the silver standard, having to average a minimum of 15.25mph. I should be able to do that as I usually average more than that on my rides around home. Its in the Chiltern Hills though the profile might make it a bit iffy, that plus the distance.
I have been wanting to do something like this for quite some time but usually they are too far away just for a trial run. They are increasingly popular, but not cheap, although you do get a signposted route and feed stations. There is also a ‘broom wagon’ which trails along behind everybody and picks up exhausted riders or those with major mechanical problems. Despite what it says on the web page I think they do tend to get a bit competitive with all the frustrated ‘wannabee’ racing cyclists getting it out of their system. I hope I can resist that temptation, for the first one anyway and find a group riding at a steady pace.
Now its down to some training and a few long rides over the next couple of weeks.