For so many gravel race directors and participants, what gravel is not has been almost as much of an attraction as what gravel is. As in, gravel racing is not road racing — a standardized, rule-centric sport with an overarching structure of a national governing body, much less bike racing’s global governing body of the UCI.
And now, the UCI has announced a gravel world championships in 2022 and a Gravel World Series. The UCI’s gravel worlds will most likely be in the U.S. So what will this mean for gravel racing?
VeloNews spoke to a few racers and race directors for their thoughts on the announcement.
For starters, there already is a Gravel Worlds in the U.S. — a grassroots event in Lincoln, Nebraska that has been going since 2010. Gravel Worlds promoters selected the name as a good-natured joke.
Jason Strohbehn is director of operations at Gravel Worlds. He said the UCI has not contacted him or his team, much less explored the concept with them.