The San Gabriel Mountains aren't exactly the Dolomites, but they'll still prove challenging and scenic. (Photo: Bettini)
Here’s your chance to get the Giro d’Italia experience right here in the U.S.A. The organizers of the Giro d’Italia are bringing the Giro to us, with Gran Fondo rides taking place in Pasadena, California this weekend on July 22nd and Miami, Florida on November 11th. The inaugural Pasadena Gran Fondo Giro d’Italia
will take participants on scenic courses through the San Gabriel Mountains (there are three different route options: 85, 64, and 29 miles). The 85-mile Fondo route will feature some of the locals favorite routes, including the secluded long, steady ascent up Big Tujunga Canyon in the National Forest of East Los Angeles County, where you’ll see more wildlife than cars.
Each entry includes an Italian-made custom Gran Fondo Giro d’Italia jersey, chip timing for the ride, well-stocked aid stations, mechanical support, finishers medal, post-ride authentic Italian pasta feed, and entrance into the two-day expo featuring some of Italy’s top cycling brands.
For those wanting to test their climbing prowess, the ride will feature a King of the Mountains competition, with the fastest male and female receiving an authentic Magglia Azzura (Blue Climbers Jersey)–the same that is handed out to the best overall climber in the Giro d’Italia. But, you don't have to out climb former Giro winner Ivan Basso to take home the Magglia Azzura in Pasadena, just the other Fondo riders.
Locals Note: Old Town Pasadena is full of many good places to eat, but take our word for it, the best Mexican food is found at the dumpy (compared to the Cheesecake Factory next door) El Toreo Cafe on Fair Oaks just three doors down from Colorado Ave. The real deal!