Friday 13 July 2007

Andiamo a Verona !

Actually, we're flying into Verona and then making our way to Treviso for the Gran Fondo di Pinarello.

Everything is packed, including climbing legs and sunscreen. It's gonna be a scorcher this weekend. The weather in the UK has been at best unsettled, and at worst apocalyptic. The 30+degree celsius expected in the Veneto will be well appreciated. I just hope my body can remember what it's like to be in such heat ! Also, must remember to pick up some decent shades - if you can't get anything else right in Italy, just make sure you've got a stylish pair of sunglasses !

I am really looking forward to the weekend. We will arrive in Verona tonight, stay in a b&b in the surrounding hills. Tomorrow we do a bike ride somewhere near Lake Garda. Then we make our way to Treviso. Sunday is the big race, then Monday we make our way back to Verona, probably with a stop over at Bassano del Grappa. All fun packed stuff.

The gran fondo will be a big affair - around 4,000 riders. I'll have 200km of rolling pre-Dolomites hills to look forward to. There is also the option to do the 130km course.

Past experience of these events is that most of the Italians blast off from the gun along the flat, and you chase them down eyeballs out. Then at the intersection they peel off to do the short course, and you suddenly find yourself knackered and all alone to tackle the serious stuff. As the road rises up in front of you you feel a deep sense of foreboding and dread ! If that happens again, I'll be following the Italians back to join them for the customary plate of spaghetti, good glass of Soave, and a delicious gelato. This is Italy, and la vita e bella - must make the most of it !

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