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Best Cycling Races North Carolina 2024

Best Cycling Races North Carolina 2024

Group of riders on North Carolina backcountry road

The team at Strambecco rates the Best Cycling Events North Carolina 2024 based on various factors, including reputation, route quality, location, rider feedback, and the event’s or race’s overall uniqueness. Strambecco does not list every event.  We strive to identify and review special and noteworthy events, spanning Road, Gravel, and Mountain Bike events and races.

Cycling Bliss in the Tar Heel State: Unveiling North Carolina’s Premier Cycling Events

North Carolina, with its diverse topography and scenic landscapes, is a prime destination for competitive cyclists and enthusiasts. From challenging mountainous terrains to rolling countryside roads, the Tar Heel State offers a cycling experience like no other. If we had to pick the best of the Best Cycling Events in North Carolina in 2024, we’d start with two standout events that define North Carolina’s reputation as a haven for cyclists.

1. Gran Fondo Asheville: A Scenic Challenge

Event Overview: The Gran Fondo Asheville is a jewel in North Carolina’s cycling crown and part of the prestigious Gran Fondo National Series, a series of 10+ Road Events taking place across the US, all qualifier events for the USA Cycling Gran Fondo National Championship held in the Fall at Gran Fondo Maryland.  Combining the thrill of competition with the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains, this event attracts cyclists from across the nation. Participants can choose from varying route lengths, each offering a different level of challenge and breathtaking scenery.

Rider Experience: Cyclists at the Gran Fondo National Series Event in Asheville are treated to a sensory feast. The routes wind through picturesque landscapes, challenging riders with both steep climbs and exhilarating descents. The event’s festive atmosphere and well-organized logistics create an unforgettable experience for both competitive athletes and those looking to test their personal limits.


  • Three route options cater to different skill levels and offer a unique “timed segment” format.
  • Scenic vistas of the Blue Ridge Mountains and charming countryside.
  • Post-ride celebrations with food, music, and a sense of accomplishment.

2. Belgian Waffle Ride North Carolina (Asheville): Where Grit Meets Gourmet

Event Overview: The Belgian Waffle Ride (BWR) has made its mark on the cycling world, and the Asheville edition is no exception. Known for its challenging course and unique blend of road and gravel sections, the BWR Asheville promises an unforgettable experience for cyclists seeking a taste of adventure and a dash of the extraordinary.  BWR Asheville is part of the prestigious Belgian Waffle Ride Series, a North American series offering some of the world’s most highly respected and well-organized gravel events/races.  The idea of the Series was conceived initially with the advent of “the most unique cycling event in the country,” the Belgian Waffle Ride California (San Diego). BWR California is well known among cycling enthusiasts and pros as one of the most difficult bicycle races in the US at 146 miles, 40 of which are off-road sectors.  BWR events are unique because they are classic, long bicycle races that feature various off-road sectors emulating the pave or cobblestones of Europe, making the varied terrain a challenge for riders’ technical skills, equipment, endurance, luck, and versatility.

Rider Experience: BWR events are unique because they are classic, long bicycle races that feature various off-road sectors emulating the pave or cobblestones of Europe, making the varied terrain a challenge for riders’ technical skills, equipment, endurance, luck, and versatility.  The fourth Annual Belgian Waffle Ride North Carolina (Asheville) will take place on June 22 at Kanuga Resort near Asheville, which is an incredible destination nestled on 1,400 stunning acres in the Blue Ridge Mountains.


  • Three challenging course options with a mix of surfaces, including gravel and asphalt.
  • Extensive “Unroad” sections add an element of unpredictability and adventure.
  • Culinary celebrations featuring Belgian-inspired treats and local flavors.

It’s no coincidence that both of our top picks take place in Asheville, a paradise for outdoor athletes.  You can see our Asheville guide for outdoor athletes here.   Overall, North Carolina’s cycling scene, epitomized by events like the Gran Fondo National Series Event in Asheville and the Belgian Waffle Ride Asheville, offers a perfect blend of competition and camaraderie. Whether you’re a competitive athlete seeking to conquer challenging courses or an enthusiast looking to soak in the beauty of the state, North Carolina’s cycling opportunities are as diverse as its landscapes. So, grab your bike, embrace the challenge, and explore the Tar Heel State on two wheels.

If you have suggestions on other events we should consider or review, please get in touch with us here or send us a note at  Strambecco also rates the best Road, Gravel, and MTB events in the greater Southeast.

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