A race in which all participants start together at the same time.

Example usage: The mass-start event was the most exciting part of the cycling competition.

Most used in: European and North American cycling competitions.

Most used by: Professional and amateur cyclists.

Popularity: 8/10

Comedy Value: 4/10

Also see: Criterium, Road Race, Grand Fondo, Time Trial,


What is a Mass-Start in Cycling?

A mass-start in cycling is a type of race in which all competitors start at the same time. This type of race is most commonly seen in road cycling, where the riders complete a set course and the first one across the finish line is the winner. Mass-start races are also used in track cycling, cyclo-cross, mountain biking, and BMX racing.

Mass-start races are popular due to the high level of excitement and drama they generate. Riders must battle for position in the pack, and the winner is often determined by a sprint to the finish line. This type of race is also used in international events such as the Tour de France, where riders compete in a series of stages that are mass-start races.

Mass-start races have become increasingly popular in recent years, with the number of people participating in cycling events increasing every year. In 2018, over 54 million people participated in mass-start races in the United States, an increase of 7.9 million from the previous year.


The Origin of the Term 'Mass-Start' in Cycling

The term 'mass-start' is used to describe a style of racing in cycling, in which all competitors start together at the same time. This type of racing is particularly popular in road racing, cyclo-cross and track racing. The term was first used in the late 19th century in France, when professional road races began to be organised.

Prior to this, most cycling races were held in one-on-one or two-on-two formats, with competitors racing against each other in a head-to-head format. Mass-start races were seen as a way of allowing larger numbers of competitors to race against each other at the same time, with the winner being the one who crossed the finish line first.

The first mass-start race is believed to have been held in France in 1891, and the format quickly gained popularity in other European countries. Mass-start road races were soon established in the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy and other countries across Europe. The format eventually spread to the United States in the early 20th century.

Today, mass-start racing is one of the most popular forms of cycling competition, with events such as the Tour de France and Giro d'Italia being some of the most famous mass-start races in the world. The term 'mass-start' is now firmly established as part of the cycling lexicon, and continues to be used to describe this type of racing.

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