Sunday, 10 June 2012

Biking the Teglio

Wow, the cycling in Bormio is just phenomenal, with three amazing days of riding during the Pez 10th party. It was a real treat having expert guides such as Giacomo and Daniele, as we didn't have to worry about picking out the route or getting lost. Plus, they always knew where all the great coffee stops are! The first day was the longest at 130 km, taking us down the valley (luckily we passed by but skipped the dreaded Mortirolo climb) towards the Teglio climb, one of the climbs in this year's amazing Stage 20 of the Giro d'Italia that finished atop the Stelvio.
Along for the ride was pro cyclist Davide Vigano of Lampre-ISD, one of Alessandro Petacchi's key lead out men. Davide was a really cool and down-to-earth guy, riding with us and not too cool to help with flats, putting bikes on the truck, or to joke with us. I spent a good amount of time on his wheel, getting the Petacchi view! Davide was actually with us for all three days in Bormio. He skipped the Giro but has just finished an altitude camp in preparation for the Tour de Suisse and Le Tour.
The Teglio was TOUGH for such a short (7 km) climb, with the middle 4 km averaging >10% and bits of 15%. It was also baking hot, not to mention all the heat coming off the freshly tarred road. Lots of road graffiti and also pink decorations everywhere still from the Giro. Despite all my time in Europe, it still amazes me that big races go through such narrow roads through tiny villages. Rich and I rode it together and had some fun in the process.
Gord and Rich pondering how to get home with the minimum of mountain climbing!