Ride Like King 12 includes opportunities to participate in virtual rides on Zwift or outdoor rides on roads, paths or trails in celebration of cycling. Outdoor rides will vary by region and are subject to local guidelines related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Beyond the rides, there are special contests, product giveaways, and opportunities to get involved with advocacy efforts in partnership with World Bicycle Relief, a global charity group that works to mobilize people in developing countries.
World Bicycle Relief
Since 2005, World Bicycle Relief has delivered over half a million specially designed bicycles with Giant Group as a manufacturing partner. To honor 12 years of Ride Like King, Giant Group will donate one Buffalo Bicycle for every 1200km ridden on RLK12 Zwift events over three days.
The Buffalo Bicycle is a purpose-built bike that’s engineered for heavy loads, long distances and rugged terrain. These bikes are simple to maintain and easy to repair, ensuring years of reliable use in harsh conditions. They are manufactured by Giant Group and assembled by World Bicycle Relief employees in local regions around the world. Beyond the Zwift fundraising events, participants in RLK12 can join this cause by making donations if they choose. It takes only $147 to put a new bike in the field and have a major impact on people’s lives.
“It’s always amazing to see a community come together to use an opportunity like this to help create positive impact in the world around them,” said World Bicycle Relief Director of Partnerships Claire Geiger. “This event will help students access education, allow healthcare workers to reach more patients, and enable entrepreneurs to better serve their communities. It is about so much more than a bicycle, it is about a brighter future.”
Why We Ride Like King
Ride Like King started in 2009 as a small event within the Giant family to celebrate company founder King Liu’s passion for cycling. In 2007, at age 73, King prepared for and completed a 15-day, 927km ride around Taiwan. That ride sparked a renewed interest in King’s own cycling lifestyle, and the benefits that cycling can have on health and fitness. In the following years King dedicated himself to tackling longer cycling tours and traveling to countries near and far to inspire people, countries and governments to consider the positive impacts that cycling can create.
Now 86, King has ridden through regions including China, Japan and Europe, bringing attention to the ways that cycling can reduce pollution and enhance quality of life. On each tour, King meets with fellow cyclists and political leaders to learn about successful cycling infrastructure and discuss ways to grow participation in the sport.
King retired from his position as chairman of Giant in 2016, but the annual Ride Like King event continues to grow each year. The outdoor rides are organized by Giant employees, retailers, ambassadors and fans. In recent years Giant has expanded the Ride Like King event by partnering with Zwift, the online cycling and training program that enables riders to train, compete and interact with other users in a virtual setting. Thousands of people from around the world participated in these massive global group rides last year, and even more are expected to join in the fun this year.
"We are excited to have great partners like Zwift and World Bicycle Relief to help us extend the reach of King Liu’s message all around the world,” said Giant Group Global Marketing Director An Le. “This event has long been a celebration of cycling within the Giant Group community—our employees, retailers, athletes and riders—and in recent years it has grown into a global movement and a chance for everyone to be involved. This year’s theme is ‘Ride for a Better World,’ and the Zwift online platform makes it a fun and easy way for anyone to join this great cause.”
Zwift Ride Events
The Zwift partnership has grown this year to include four ride events, August 14-16, with an open or women’s-only option for each event. The first two open rides, August 14-15, will be led by Australian Tim Searle, founder of the Aussie Hump Day Ride (AHDR), one of the largest weekly group rides on Zwift that typically draws up to 500 participants. Paddy Bevin, a pro racer for the Giant-sponsored CCC Team, will lead the third open ride on August 15, and Rahsaan Bahati, a former U.S. national criterium champion and Giant ambassador, will lead the fourth open ride on August 16.
Four women’s rides will be led by riders affiliated with Liv, the women’s bicycle brand that’s part of the Giant Group. Krystle Simpson, a Zwift leader who has raced more than 400 events, will lead the first women’s ride on August 14. Two additional women’s rides will take place August 14-15, with Liv Racing athlete Serena Bishop Gordon leading one ride. The second ride on August 15 will be led by Liv founder Bonnie Tu and CCC-Liv Team pro Ashleigh Moolman Pasio. The final women’s ride is scheduled for August 16 and will be led by Liv Racing athlete Ayesha McGowan. The rides will each take place on different Zwift courses, and all of them will have a social pace of around 2.0 W/kg.
All of the Zwift ride participants will be assigned RLK12 kits for their rides and will be able to unlock the kits upon completion of their ride. Riders will be assigned Giant TCR Advanced SL bikes or Liv Langma Advanced SL bikes for the women’s rides. Participants in the Zwift rides also have a chance to win real commemorative RLK12 jerseys, each signed by King Liu, during each ride by random drawings. Five jerseys will be given away on each ride.
More jerseys will also be awarded to participants of local outdoor Ride Like King events in their own communities. Employees, retailers and friends of Giant and Liv are encouraged to ride August 14-16, sharing stories and photos through Giant and Liv social media channels. To be eligible for prizes, riders can simply post photos from their rides to Facebook or Instagram with the #RideLikeKing hashtag on those dates.
To learn more about this year’s Ride Like King events, or to organize your own ride, go to the Ride Like King Facebook page.
If you'd like to make donations through World Bicycle Relief, please click here.
And the details for all our Ride Like King events can be found here on Zwift.