UK cyclists racing abroad

Hi Everyone

Does anybody have any experience with racing abroad? I need some help on where to find foreign races and how to go about entering etc? Any reccomendations?

I’m a UK based 2nd cat and Masters rider looking for a new challenge. Nowhere is really off limit. I’d love to try;

USA crits?
Sunny stage races like Mallorca or Malta?
Belgian kermesse?

Any help is greatly appreciated

(not THE G, but a G)

For USA just go on the USAC website and search the calendar. All of the big races have their own website as well generally.

Myself and teammates travel a fair bit for racing, it’s really not much different to local racing except for the fact that you get weird looks for licensing and everyone seems to have their own weird rule or two. Be sure to read the tech guides.

You’ll need an international license to race in the US but that’s easy to get. In the US, getting an “international licence” simply involves checking an extra box and paying an extra fee when getting your basic annual USA Cycling licence and I’d assume it is at least that easy in Europe.

From the USA cycling rule book:

1H7. Registration
(a) In order to compete in USA Cycling races, riders must present a valid racing license from
USA Cycling or an international license from another national federation that is affiliated with
the UCI.

As for entries, for almost all road races that is done through the USA Cycling website. They have all the races up there, eventually, but often not early enough for real long term travel planning. Search the web directly for races you are interested in to get scheduled dates.

In addition to, I also use as most if not all of the races in my area (mid-Atlantic USA) show up there before they complete the permit process and show up on USA Cycling’s events pages.

I have no experience racing internationally but I can offer some information on racing in my region…

From my location, Hershey, PA, I can usually find races within 1.5 to 2 hours on Saturdays and Sundays most weeks through the season. Trexlertown (1.25 hours from Hershey) has track racing on Tuesday nights for senior cats, Friday nights for elite and pro, and Saturday afternoons have masters and rookie racing. Staying closer to Philadelphia would put you in an even more central location to hit the most races with the least amount of driving. Philly would also be fun for some touristy stuff.

Most of our races are crits but there are a few decent road races still on the calendar and often are in April and May. While there are always outliers, our racing season is mostly starting up in April and runs through August.

You didn’t mention your age but you can expect 35+, 45+, 55+, and some weekends having 65+ categories in most of the Eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey races. In the last couple of years, 35+ fields have dwindled and the 45+ and 55+ fields have grown substantially. Many weekends see 50 or more riders in each age category and some of the bigger races over 80 riders. Most promotors put the oldest categories earliest in the day’s schedule which often attracts many riders to double up races, in a few cases, I’ve even tripled (55+, 45+, 35+). The extra races are typically discounted. The first race might be $40 and then $10-15 each extra race the same day.

If you end up visiting my region, be sure to get in touch with me.

Have a look at the Masters Tour of Majorca. Website is in Spanish, but a few folk from out club go out to race it every year. I’m planning it next year.

If You are truly racing and not just riding events then you may need a full licence from British Cycling rather than the default licence.
For example in the Gran Fondo Worlds all riders needed a full international race licence which requires a Silver membership and then buying a race licence, this give you a UCI number and access to the legal support if things go wrong. I don’t think legal fees are covered outside UK though, make sure you have race specific insurance for that and anything else.
At Masters level we didn’t get a full Team GB welcome but more a mention in the email that if you qualified click here to order your kit - it was still cheaper through certain retailers.
Officially representing your country is awesome though, knowing you’ve earned that jersey, so check out the Gran Fondo World Series, the UK qualifier is Tour of Cambridgeshire. 2020 Worlds in in Whistler Canada but in Glasgow in 2023 with all of the UCI World Championships.


Great, thanks for this. Done some digging about with British Cycling and found this;

It is a requirement of UCI that members of British Cycling obtain a letter of authority to race abroad. To qualify for a letter of authority, you must be in possession of a current Full Racing Licence. Requests should be sent with your membership number to

It is a requirement of UCI that all riders must be covered by adequate medical insurance when racing overseas. While the National Health Service in the UK provides for British riders competing in Britain, it may be necessary for you to take out additional travel insurance to cover you whilst you are racing abroad. For races in Europe, it is strongly advised that riders also carry a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Please refer to the advice above on EHIC cards.

1 Like is a great tip thanks!

Im 33 now so need to wait a bit to get into the 35+ races!

I watch the TR race analysis from their crit races along with Norcal cyclings videos and I’m chomping at the bit to get involved in a USA crit! I’ll be sure to give you a shout if I’m in the area :slight_smile:

@AndyGajda YES!! This is exactly the sort of thing I was looking at. Probably short notice for this year but I’ll be at next years one without a doubt!

@Smurf yeah I did the race in Albi last year, thats where this desire to race abroad started! I did the qualifier this year in Cambridge too. I managed to finish 4th in the 19-34 age group and had the intent of going to Poland but life got in the way. I might have a year off then hit the 35-39 age group for Glasgow…

This looks good too

1 Like

You can ride in Belgium with a TLI membership. There are details of the races on the tinternet and you just turn up and pay your 5 euro or so. Be prepared for a manic race, attacking from the start and constantly until the finish. In a kermesse you be lucky if the commentator speaks English so listen out for the Laaste Ronde. Best of luck.

Ive raced abroad a fair bit but normally only track events now.

Getting the letter from the UCI is easy, obviously dependent on whether you have a current full racing licence, drop them an email asking for it and it popped up in the post.

Also, and maybe track specific but I also had to get UK track accreditation put on my licence, prob wont apply to you, but also I needed a UCI ID which shows next to my nationality on the licence, this I needed for I think a cyclo cross race, ehich may have been part of the masters worlds, but cant remember…

On the lower end of international racing . . . My club puts on a couple local races a year (US) and given our proximity to Canada we get a decent number of Canadian entrants. One thing that happens in the entry process is the USA Cycling entry website does not automatically pick up some of the basic rider info from international licences (at least Canadian ones . . . ) so we are lacking info we get automatically from US riders. So, if you get extra questions, it may simply be because of that.

@SteveCoulson thats useful, I race track too but need to wait for my 35th before I can do it. I’ll bear this in mind. Thank you!

@STP yeah it cant be simple I guess, I’ll expect some extra questions when the time comes! Thanks :slight_smile: