Thanks to Lindsay for allowing us to include his review of his experience in the Maratona dles Dolomites 2013 as a member of Team Solo Bike.
What a day! The Captain has never experienced a start with over 10,000 cyclists and roads closed to traffic for the entire ride. Just amazing and it took till the 3rd climb of the day to really space the riders.
Av speed 14.9 kmh
Ride time 7 hours 9 minutes
Ascent 3034 meters
Descent 2922 meters
The Captain finished 153rd in the 60-64 age group and 2582 overall. Not too bad considering there were over 6,000 riders in the 106km
The ride is almost as difficult ad Dead Horse Gap but there are no climbs as difficult ad the DHG climb.
It started with the Captain and the General having a nervous pee on the side of the start that was fully captured by the helicopter and broadcast live over Italy.
Slow start with so many riders.
The first climb Passé Pordoi was 14.4 km long. Just unbelievable watching cyclists behind and in front snake their way up the climb.
We were on the Sella Rhond circuit and the best climbs the Captain has done and with clear weather and snow on the ground at the 1900 meter mark it was just beautiful.
Passé Campolongo went for 10 long Kms after a hectic descent from Pordoi. The Captain doing 60kmh being passed by riders doing over 80kmh. Very interesting. There were 33 switchbacks.
Passé Sella followed. A 5km cling with towering mountains wherever you looked. Totally awe inspiring. A long descent to the start of Passé Gardena with scenery to die for.
Beautiful ride to Passé Gardena followed by a 10km very Techinical descent to Covara.
The Captain went through the wrong gate and finished the 55km course. The announcer called out my name whilst I was arguing with officials to get back on the course.
At the 55km mark some 2000 meters of ascent had been recorded by the Garmin
Another climb up to Passé Pordoi before about 20 km of descent and the only flat section of the course. The officials booted the Captain off the 138km course as he was too slow so I found myself on. 12 km climb to Passo Falzarego.
I did not think that the beauty of these mountains could improve but I was wrong. Just astounding.
Got to Passo Val Parola and had some 15 km downhill to the bottom with a small 5 km climb to the finish.
Iron Mike missed the turn for the 138 km and was very disappointed.
Every now and the you get a unique experience cycling and with wonderful weather and amazing mountains the Captain reports a very good day.