Those bikes you've looked at are all great bikes, but what do you mean by looked at? There is nothing better than going to a good local bike shop and giving candidate bikes a test ride - remember, you're under no obligation to make a purchase. Importantly, a good bike shop should be able to guide you through finding the right frame size and how to adjust the bike to fit your body, which I'd argue is ultimately more important than the bike itself (and components on the bike are least important, almost all of them can... and if you're me... will!.. end up getting swapped out over time).
I ended up trying a few Cannondale bikes and a Scott bike when I was choosing my first road bike last year, and felt than the Cannondale Synapse best suit my needs - though the bike has changed quite a bit since then as I've learnt more about myself :) This is also something that it might be worth keeping in mind - cycling is a big sport, and you might surprise yourself just how much you like it. When I got started I thought I was only interested in sportives, and now here I am finding myself training every other day and racing at the weekend... My point being it might be better to spend a little less in case your goals radically change in the future. It's a bit awkward if you buy a stiff racing frame only to realise you're much more interested in really long gently paced rides (or of course the other way round!)
Also, I should point out that this club has a huge range of abilities - so don't feel you need a flashy bike just to keep up! You'll be sure to find riders who match your ability or provide a good challenge either way. That said... if you want to go and break the bank, I'm not going to try and stop you ;)
Sorry this is a bit of a general comment, but hopefully that helps!