I was really excited to receive notification the other day, for the 2012 Amy Gillett Gran Fondo registrations had opened. However, my excitement quickly turned to dismay, and then slight resentment at the event organisers when I saw that the price had increased by approximately 15% on the 2011 price. Furthermore, I realised the price of most everything associated with the event also increased in price!
So, I reviewed what I receive for a $190 ride in September, beside riding along the Great Ocean Road.
• A fully timed, mass participation competitive event based on finishing time - true 'Gran Fondo' style
• 120km of fully closed roads on the iconic Great Ocean Road
• Open to all rider levels with staggered starting times - safety first
• Age group and team prize money and awards
• Qualify for the 2013 UCI World Cycling Tour World Championships (UWCT Final)
• Limited field of participants for 2012
For my hard earned cash, that's all I get. Food, accommodation, travel and insurance is all extra. There is no t-shirt, jersey, discounted food or local accommodation wrapped up in the registration. Just the above.
To break it down into a monetary perspective, I decided to compare registration costs associated with some international Gran Fondo events. Here is what I discovered:
To ride Tour of Flanders - €35 (AUD$45)
To ride Lake Tapoe NZ - $99 (AUD$78)
UCI approved event also.
To ride Etape du Tour, France - €95 + €5 ins (AUD$128)
Two dates & two routes to choose from! Completely closed course also.
Ride organisers can surely do so much better, and make it even more attractive for people to jump onto events. We seem to get completely soaked and ripped off in this beautiful country!! Why?
Footnote: I'm reserving my decision to register. Still weighing up the cost of it all.
Replies are closed for this discussion.
I think it is a wish for people to want to be part of a Community event and at the same time draw attention to the 'cause' and give a little back to their Community I believe most people are happy to pay a reasonable amount of money to be part of a Community event. It is the 'rip off' merchants that are making these become a little out of the reach of the average 'joe'. For my two bobs worth the only 'paying event' I support , at the moment, is Ride Like Crazy'. But each to their own.
Yeh ,, I agree Frank ,, things are expansive here ,,but our wages are fairly high too ..
Personally I'd like to tour here and OS. ,,variety is the go , and money is there to spend !
UPDATE - 25/04/2012
Many thanks to everyone's contribution to this topic, and for those also who had a "sticky-beak" at it.
I want to share the email response from the AGF I received yesterday afternoon.
Sorry that it has taken so long to reply. To answer your question about the increase in price. Theer are many factors, not the least being that we wish to improve the experience for all participants. The costs of staging the event have increased; the fact that we are opening the event to an increased number of people has also caused an increase. These are intangible of course.
Some inclusions which were not available in 2011 are: the Hydralyte Sports Pack, the end of ride food, African Wildlife Safaris Village Entry,15% The Freedom Machine Voucher and 25% HED Wheels hire voucher.
I notice that, despite your concerns, you have registered for the Gran Fondo and I hope that you will enjoy the experience in 2012 even more than in 2011."
In closing, I am looking forward to the event (albeit probably the only event within my budget for rides in 2012)) and I am grateful to the AGF in taking time to respond and acknowledge my concerns raised relating to the increased registration pricing of the Gran Fondo event. I know it will be another awesome event to be participate in.
See you there if you can make it!!
What an interesting reply.
So making an event bigger makes it more expensive per participant.
So no economies of scale here.
It seem poor business practice to deliberately increase costs (pragmatically some increases are inevitable).
All these "inclusions" so increasing sponsorship should increase the cost to the participants?
I wonder what the sponsors think of this typically they pay to get their "brand" exposed to a target audience.
It seems some other business model is being used here.
Or is it just some feeble a tempt to justify profit maximization?
Really the most effective protest is to take your dollars elsewhere.
I hope the participants enjoy the ride while I have never been on such a ride I must admit I am not keen on crowds.
This is not that surprising. I am a member of the race committee with the ACTVETs and as the club grows the cost per rider is going up due to the size of the pelotons. As they grow you start needing more marshels, more chase cars and it becomes harder to gain road approvals.
And the catch 22 Julian is it wont get any cheaper if you keep signing up each year :)
that is just cruel.
I participated in the inaugural Gran Fondo, and quickly registered for 2012. Yes the price hurt a little, but it is my holiday doing what I love - and loved the ride & the road closures & the slick organisation of it all. Think many a rider would be shocked if they see the bills that AGF would have to pay for all required to host such a ride, particularly the road closures. Not fussed about not getting a jersey, not fussed about lunch as would rather go to a cafe & order what I want. Happy to spend my money into the local communities with food/accommodation costs as I would do with any holiday.
I'm in. Accom was a bit tricky ended up at Airey's Inlet and have to attend the 6am briefing on Sunday but hey no pain no gain. Where is everybody else staying?
I rode the ATB last year and the price for that is $180 which includes ferry and a top not that I ever wear it or previous ones.
Looking forward to the GF with its timing, hilltop finish and closed roads it's the closest I will ever get to a stage in any sort of race.
We have grabed two cabins in the caravan park. Very reasonable in terms of cost and within a 5 min walk to the supermarket, 10 min from the centre of town.
Even better as your coming down the hill the entrance is 10m from the bottom at the intersection.
Well done how long ago did you grab them? Last night everything was showing as booked out. I wondered if Amy's themselves had booked everything and were going to release it as packages but when you check on the site there is no info and they tell you to book asap. So maybe not.
I would give the Lorne Caravan Park a call direct.
They are really nice guys who were really helpfull.
I found them last year and knowing that this ride would be popular I called them and reserved two cabin as soon as I knew the date.
I have always found that onsite cabins to be really good value when travelling. These ones have a three level bunk and a queen size bed. Plus stove, microwave and TV. Outside dinning area which makes for fun when other cabins come out to talk.
My only question is that when ever I go to these types of events I like to bring the stand and do a last minute check of my bike I always end up doing the bike mechanic for everyone around me. Last year even managed to replace a gear cable for someone I just met. Did get me a beer for doing the job and a beer after the ride as a thank you.
All cabins sold out for sat 15th it was first place I checked. But at least I know where to bring my bike.:o)