It’s that time of year again, people all over Europe are out training for this years L’Eroica. After building up their pre 1987 bikes, finding and collecting parts to make every component as historic as the races itself, they are part of the way to setting off to Italy to take part in the most historic and heroic race. Every year since the ride was first ridden it has just gain momentum and following. The event first took place in 1997, with only 85 heroic riders competing and every year since then the numbers have doubled. Last year 5500 riders competed in the event and every year someone either injuries themselves pretty horrifically or DIES… So this race is no mean feat.
There are 4 races you can compete in, the 38km, 75km, 135km, 205km all set in the Tuscan hills, mostly riding on a loose gravel surface that means it’s far more challenging than the standard road race and far more treacherous. This ride like so many other consists of check points and food stops for the longer riders, although unlike most races you are met at the check points with a glass of vino and a selection of fine Italian meats, cheeses and breads, something to replenish your tired body and mind.
A highly recommended event for anyone looking for an excuse to visit Italy and enjoy everything that part of the world has to offer and of course to spend days looking for vintage components to make your bike acceptable enough to take along and let other vintage enthusiasts scrutinise! This years events registration has now closed, but if your lucky and remember the date that registration opens next year you may get a spot and become one of the heroes yourself.
This from the Eroica Site-
The idea was to seek out the authentic roots of this fantastic sport, with its great, popular heart, and rediscover the joy in fatigue and the thrill of the challenge. L’Eroica is also a Foundation, the purpose of which is to safeguard the heritage of the white gravel roads of Tuscany. From these romantically modern notions came the idea of the cycling event which started in 1997.