The first summer playing our first ever cycling game in Malaga was over. September was close and It was time to return to Vitoria, my hometown in northern Spain. By then I was completely mad about the new game and I couldn’t wait to share it with my school friends.

Just a few minutes after unpacking at home I ran up to my dad’s store-room. I desperately needed a big piece of wood to build a new board (proto v.0.2). The long hours travelling across the Iberian peninsula had been very productive in my mind: lots of ideas, potential improvements, etc. My hunt at dad’s store-room was succesful: a sweet 2×1 m. wooden board had just become 100% Diego Hernandos’s propiety.
I sketched my first track using a ruler and a marker. Needless to say that the result was far from perfect, but it didn’t matter, I had a board! Step 2: the tokens. I gathered all my 5-peseta coins and customized 5 new teams that joined MY very own Festina* (which had travelled all the way from Malaga with me). Everything was ready: time for the official launch!

I invited 4 friends home for the first game in Vitoria and Leandro was one of them. I wanted them to like my new game so badly that I would rush all the tedious calculations so that we could play as many games as possible. It worked! soon my friends were as hooked on the game as I was. In the years to come countless afternoons, especially during holidays, would know no other activity that playing the new cycling game. The legend of CYCLING PARTY had conquered Vitoria!

*That legendary Festina would give me 2 years of glorious victories :)


As many other things in life, the origin of what we call CYCLING PARTY today comprises a remarkable lot of fortunate events. Let’s start with my family. Back in the late 80s, a good share of the Hernando bunch moved to the beautiful southern Spanish city of Malaga chaising my grandpa’s professional steps. It must have been during one of the traditional summer get-togethers when my cousin Rodrigo and I heard our uncles talking about an old kids game they used the play back in the days. The board game’s theme was cycling and it comprised basic materials such as bottle caps, a wooden board and a pair of die. The young friends customized the caps with stickers of cycling legends first and raced them on the board later applying a basic set of rules similar to other dice-based games. “A very creative and affordable way to spend long afternoons with your friends” said my uncle while my cousin Rodrigo took good note of every detail.

Days later, Rodrigo and I were enjoying one of those hot summer afternoons by the pool with our friends. At some point Rodri recalled our uncle’s story unleashing great excitement among the young audience. In fact, it didn’t take more than a couple of days of detemined kids’ work to put together the first ever version of our own game. Each one of our friends picked their very own cycling squad that would be painted and glued over 1-peseta coins. What a myriad of legendary names of teams like Banesto, Euskaltel, Kelme, ONCE or Festina we had!

We also created the first set of basic rules, most of them still used today in the addictive Junior version of Cycling Party. We also played stage races, similar to the current Master version. However back then there was no smart software that could spare us all the hard calculations to obtain the final scores. Wasted hours of pen, paper and calculator that could have made a good accontant of me!
Anyway, I remember those days with a smile in my face: summer, family, friends, colorful maillots over the badly sketched wooden board… what a time!