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Much has been said and written about these trying times. How they affect our lives, relationships, jobs, businesses and, last but not least – our beloved hobbies. Activities and sports keep up our overall wellbeing and bicycling plays this role in the lives of many. It might seem like the world of cycling has come to a complete standstill even though restrictions are just being eased but we don’t see it that way. As with everything worth fighting for – where there’s a will, there’s a way!

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The love of movement has always been a social, shareable experience with meaningful connections. What if we told you that nothing has really changed – and that it just went virtual! We’ve always been committed to keeping the cycling community sociable, relevant, informed, welcoming, fit, and positive and we are even more determined to do so now when the going got tough. That’s why ŠKODA We Love Cycling launches the #Ride2Unite initiative to unite all sports lovers, both active and passive, right where they are – inside and outside their homes!

How do we do that? #Ride2Unite is a brand new cycling initiative designed to spread positivity in the face of adversity. It is designed to take place on social media, the virtual meeting room that keeps us in touch with our colleagues and beloveds, outdoors or on indoor trainers. The virtual part will take place on Instagram and Facebook and you can look forward to shared digital rides, training advice or live streams with pro cyclists, alongside fun and informative content.

The first stream will happen on Instagram today (20th of May) at 5PM  with Wilco Kelderman. Make sure to follow us!

The outdoor part is up to you – challenge yourself or others to use these sunny upcoming days to ride, following your country’s restriction playbook, of course. And not only you will support the community’s good vibes and help it survive social distancing but you’ll keep entertained and healthy.

So, how the cycling community can participate?

Firstly: head-on. Do you want all your family and friends to know about and even participate in #Ride2Unite? Raising awareness and promoting the idea is at the heart of the first approach. Take a selfie on your stationary bike or a snap of the stretching routine you always do before a bike ride, tag #Ride2Unite and post away. Or, if your country’s Covid-19 policy allows for riding outside, take a little spring ride and inspire others to do the same – responsibly. Share stats from your ride on Strava and challenge a friend with our hashtag. Post a pic of your favourite bike that you can’t wait to take on the road again. The possibilities are endless. The more the merrier!

Know someone hungry for bike-related content? Is it you? Then you’ll really like what we’ve prepared below.

Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) at the 2019 La Vuelta. © Alamy, Profimedia

Secondly, for those who love cycling but are more of avid fans and spectators, we’ve prepared an exclusive series of regular social rides – Instagram live streams with pro cyclists who are supporting our initiative. Selected riders of Team Sunweb like Wilco Kelderman (tomorrow at 6PM CEST on Instagram), Michael Matthews, 2010 Tour de France winner Andy Schleck or Phillip Gilbert from Lotto Soudal team and others will tune in to give you riding or training advice, Q&A, words of encouragement, nutrition plans, overviews of their experience with the lockdown, how to prepare for a Grand Tour and countless other topics. Furthermore, you’ll be even able to watch some of the most striking cycling talents of today in races on virtual riding platforms such as Rouvy or ZWIFT! This whole cycling broadcast experience will be hosted by Laura Meseguer, a seasoned sports moderator and commentator. The interviews and race streams will be especially rewarding for the fans who looked forward to race broadcasts or even to travelling to see the racecourses first hand. What can be better than supporting what you love from your couch? You can, of course, switch and mix outdoor riding with our livestreams to your heart’s content!

Cyclists (and cycling fans), unite! Separately, in our homes! Detailed information on scheduled streams and how to get the best of the #Ride2Unite initiative coming soon.

And remember, passion beats lockdown!

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