No more wooden medals for RideLondon finishers

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FILE PHOTO: Cyclists ride down Piccadilly as they participate in the RideLondon FreeCycle event, in London, Britain, May 29, 2022. REUTERS/John Sibley

London (Reuters) – A lightweight wooden medal proved an inadequate reward for the thousands of amateur cyclists who completed the RideLondon mass participation event last year so organisers have bowed to pressure and will reinstate metal medallions instead.

Eco-friendly wooden medals have become more common for sporting events and were introduced for RideLondon in 2022 in part to make the event more sustainable.

But they have not been to everyone’s liking.

Finishers in next year’s race, which takes riders from central London out to the countryside of Essex and back, will be decorated with medals made from recycled zinc alloy.

“We listened to the feedback from riders and the strong preference for a metal finisher’s medal,” Kevin Nash, RideLondon Route Director, said in a statement.

“We are delighted we have now identified a way to produce a sustainable metal medal, which meets our commitment to establishing sustainable initiatives across our events.”

Zinc alloy is said to be more recyclable than aluminium alternatives and any leftovers will be melted down and made into new products, organisers say.

Around 25,000 cyclists, many raising money for charity, will take part in the traffic-free event next year in May, making it one of the largest of its kind in the world.

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