- - Rapha Continental Ride Series

Rapha Continental Ride Series

The Rapha Continental was established in the United States in 2007. A unique adventure, it was driven by a simple idea. In an age when road riding has become increasingly sanitised, the Rapha Continental set out to rediscover the lost spirit of cycling. It was, and still is, about the view from the road less travelled, seeing North America via punishing climbs, forgotten gravel roads and endless tarmac.

The journey has also been about recording these experiences in words, pictures and on film. The result is a unique journal, a growing archive complete with maps, ride data and cue sheets. For five years the Rapha Continental has showcased the most inspiring rides the American continent has to offer. And now, in 2012, Rapha is taking the adventure worldwide.

In addition to continuing in North America, the Rapha Continental will be discovering the road less travelled in the

The UK’s character shifts as quickly as its weather, regional accents and vistas. From ancient forests, steep narrow lanes, dark valleys and windswept ridges to tumbledown villages and pagan rituals. Every new ride stitches another line across this eccentric, eclectic landscape.

Eschewing the road well-travelled, the Rapha Continental Europe will instead explore the unknown, the hidden and the forgotten. Supported by both iconic and up-and-coming framebuilders who share our vision of standing out from the masses, the Continental Europe will seek out the local stories and routes that make Europe unique. From the Mediterranean to the Arctic, from the lowlands of Flanders to the highlands of the Carpathian Mountains, the Continental will be an adventure into Hidden Europe.

Temples, monkeys, jungles and volcanoes, the Continental Asia will embark upon an unprecedented journey by road bike. Featuring rides in Taiwan, Indonesia, the Philippines and China’s Yunnan Province, this series has been dubbed the ‘Ring of Fire’, traversing the arc of volcanic hotspots that run through the eastern side of Asia.

A land that defies easy description. From its days as a penal colony to the gold that brought prospectors from every corner of the earth, the uninhabited, often desolate landscape they encountered made some men rich and others mad. The Continental Australia will explore the country’s past and present by riding its roads, mountains and limitless open spaces. Kangaroos beware.

Documenting one of the most inspiring landscapes and cultures in the world, the Continental Japan will pick its way across an island rich in natural beauty. The hidden habitats and ancient customs will help bind a series of rides likely to test the legs (and mental resilience) of every rider.

The back roads of North America take on new meaning when you discover that they were the testing grounds for local pros. Enlisting the likes of Andy Hampsten and Alex Stieda, this year’s Rapha Continental will ride in the company of legends, recounting stories of glory and suffering along the way.

The Rapha Continental also celebrates the strength and style of the handmade bicycle. Echoing the burgeoning scene in the US over the last decade, the bikes specially commissioned for the Continental will see Rapha collaborate with both rising stars and established framebuilding legends. Steel and timeless design will be lovingly married with lightweight technology and the finest components to produce elegant, understated – and reliable – bikes.

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