Giro D'Italia 2019 Italian Trip

Weekend Away for the Wine Stage of the Giro d’ italia 2019.

As the start of the Giro D’italia will be around our home town we have decided to have a trip where will be watching the “BIG BOYS” playing with their bikes.

The 2 top attractions of this trip are the ride to admire the boys during the “Wine Stage” arrival in San Marino & a lovely ride to Florence crossing the back spine of Italy which are the “Apennines”.

Photo Credit @ Smart Travel Italy

Photo Credit @ Smart Travel Italy

You will be flying out from London Heathrow to Bologna on Saturday 18th of May 2019 where you will be whisked away on a private transport to Imola for lunch.

Our home base will be a wine farm in the hills of Faenza with a lovely swimming pool overlooking the fields.

We will be riding for 4 days.

  • Day 1 : After arrival we will be riding for 70km Ride;

  • Day 2 : Ride to San Marino to watch the “Wine Stage” 160km Ride;

  • Day 3 : Ride to Florence across the Apennines 110km Ride;

  • Day 4 : Ride to Ravenna for the start of stage 10. 60km Ride;

Photo Credit @ Italian Tribune

Photo Credit @ Italian Tribune

Please see details here:

Price per person:

GBP 440 for cyclist on double occupancy

GBP 350 for non cyclist on double occupancy

GBP 480 for cyclist on single occupancy

The prices above include:

  • Return flights with British Airways from London to Bologna 18/5/2019 return 21/5/2019 ;

  • Economy class including cabin luggage + 1 piece of luggage of 23kg (additional luggage can be added at your own cost). The 1 piece of luggage is your bike bag.

  • Private airport transfer for you and your bike.

  • Private Transfers in town.

  • 3 nights accommodation at Agriturismo La Sabbiona on a bed and breakfast basis.

  • Trip jersey .

  • Daily supported rides with guide and mechanical support if required.

  • Complimentary sport nutrition.

At your own cost:

  • Cooking course at Agriturismo La Sabbiona available at cost of £45 per person (2 and1/2 hours course and eating what cooked);

  • Cycling bibs of the Event kit available at £65;

  • Bicycle hire available please advise if required

  • Bike box hire available at £30, please advise if required;

  • Travel insurance (we recommend Yellow Jersey Insurance. Discount code available)

  • Incidental expenses

For more information please email us store@saddledrunk.com



Richmond Park Roulers

Ciao a tutti,

I am pleased to announce that SaddleDrunk is the new kit supplier for RPR.

Credit photo to Richmond Park Roulers

Credit photo to Richmond Park Roulers

The SaddleDrunk Team has met with Matt & the committee few times to finalised the Italian materials & details.

The choices were made to meet the needs of the club,from this week their members will be able to benefit from 24 hours online shop & many other benefits.

Look out for this amazing kit or visit their website to be part of this amazing project.

Merry Xmas from the SaddleDrunk Team

SD.

Italian Trip 2019,Le Cime di Romagna

Ciao everyone is time to plan the 2019 Cycling Trips.We are offering 3 trips to all the SaddleDrunkers worldwide to join the members of the “SaddleDrunk Cycling Friends Club” in their trips.

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We are planning 3 different trips.

The trips details will be published in the next few days.

Trip 1 is to Faenza our annual trip taking part at the beginning of April in the Appennines only 65miles away from Florence & 25 miles away from Bologna. This trip is ideal preparation for any spring classic events.

See details of the trip below & if you like to join us feel free to contact us.

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Day 1 Friday 5th April

  • Flight with British Airways BA540 departing from London Heathrow at 8.00, arriving at Bologna G. Marconi Airport at 11.10.

  • Private transfer from Bologna Airport to Faenza where we’ll have lunch on route.

  • Stop in Imola by the old Formula 1 race track.

  • Arrival at Agriturismo La Sabbiona in Faenza & check in.

  • Bike preparation

  • Afternoon cycling ride including aperitif on the hills. Maps of the routes are available on Strava under SaddleDrunk Stef’s profile.

  • For non cyclist, relax at La Sabbiona, possible walk on the hills or around Faenza.

  • 8.30 pm Dinner at Osteria La Sghisa & night out in Faenza town centre.

DAY 2 Saturday 6th April

  • Relaxed morning start with breakfast 10 am approx. Cycling gentle ride (4/5 hours) with lunch en route. Maps of the routes are available on Strava under Stefano’s profile.

  • For non cyclists possible tour to Ravenna or Forli’.

  • Return and relax at the premises before dinner.

  • 8.30pm dinner in town at Casa Spadoni.

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DAY 3 Sunday 7th April

  • Early wake up 6.30 am breakfast

  • 7.30am – 8.30 am French rolling start of the race

  • Ride to the event start in the town centre (http://www.lecimediromagna.it/)

Three event route option to choose:

  1. Corto: http://www.lecimediromagna.it/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/corto.pdf

  2. Medio: http://www.lecimediromagna.it/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/medio.pdf

  3. Lungo: http://www.lecimediromagna.it/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/lungo.pdf

Please advise which one you would like to do.Along the course there will be Italian style feeding stations.Finish of the event with a nice Pasta Party (included in the event entry) with food and drinks also available for the non racers.For non cyclists option to meet the riders en route while sightseeing through the hills.

Return to La Sabbiona relax and celebration dinner on site.

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DAY 4 Monday 8th April

  • Relaxed morning start with breakfast and checkout, ride for maximum 3 hours.

  • 10.30 cooking course for those interested at cost of Euro 45 per person (2 hours course and eating what you have cooked).

  • Private transfer to Bologna Airport departure at 3.30pm

  • Return with British Airways BA545 departing Bologna at 18.50 and arriving at London Heathrow at 20.10.

In Italy we will be cycling on the other side of the road…

When riding please remember to take care of each others on and off the

bike. We leave together and we come back together on any ride with

exception of the Sunday race for which instructions will be given on site.

Price per person:

GBP 440 for cyclist on double occupancy

GBP 350 for non cyclist on double occupancy

GBP 480 for cyclist on single occupancy

The prices above include:

 Return flights with BA Economy class including 1 piece of luggage of 23kg

(additional luggage can be added at your own cost). The 1 piece of luggage

can be your bike bag.

 Private airport transfer for you and your bike.

 Private Transfers in town.

 Accomodation at Agriturismo La Sabbiona on a bed and breakfast basis.

 Le Cime di Romagna Event entry.

 Event jersey .

 Daily supported rides with guide and mechanical support if required.

 Complimentary sport nutrition.

 Celebration dinner on Sunday night including drinks.

At your own cost:

 All lunches and dinners with the exception of Cime di Romagna Pasta Party

which is included for cyclists and celebration dinner on Sunday which is

included for everyone

 Cooking course at Agriturismo La Sabbiona available at cost of £45 per

person (2 and1/2 hours course and eating what cooked)

 Cycling bibs of the Event kit available at £65

 Bicycle hire available please advise if required

 Bike box hire available at £30, please advise if required

 Travel insurance (we recommend Yellow Jersey Insurance. Discount code available)

 Incidental expenses

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For more information please email us store@saddledrunk.com

Yunnan 2018 by the Riders

Ciao a tutti...I have decided to do something different...

Basically I have asked riders randomly their views & feedback about their experience at the Granfondo Yunnan 2019..

Tom in the last stage

Tom in the last stage

Tom from London,United Kingdom.

A 30 hour trip to get there but the sun is shining and it’s nice and warm so all is good.  Had an evening and a lovely Italian meal in Hong Kong on the way.

Prologue.ITT.
We set off on the time trial – just 8km.  A beautiful rounding of a lake followed by about a mile climb at the end.  I start off quickly, too quickly – over take a couple of riders then hit the hill.  I make it up but slowly – my heart is about to explode.  I’m now overtaken.  17 minutes of full gas.  We finish at a temple at the top of a hill and enjoy views of the surrounding countryside.  Back into town to shower, deposit the bikes and enjoy a mass meal at the prizegiving in the town square.

Day 2 – stage 1: 105km from Mangshi to the Myanmar border at Ruili.Border Ride
Never done this before.  The start is mad – we’re doing 50km/hr at the start.  Lots of jostling for position and wheels.  Where’s Stef?  Just stay on the wheel otherwise you’ll be spat out the back.  The first 5km takes 8 minutes, the first 60 takes 90.  Never ridden in such a fast peloton for so long.  Didn’t mean to – there’s a lot of stages ahead but I couldn’t help myself, it was such fun.  Hit a hill after 60kms so slowed down but completed the 105km in 3 hrs.  Felt cooked, but satisfied.

Day 3 – stage 2:  145km Rock & Ruili Ride
2 big climbs then a long bumpy section to the finish back at the border gate in Ruili.  Not as mad as yesterday but still left the start at full tempo.  The hills break the peloton up so we ride in smaller groups and manage to enjoy the scenery a bit more and stop to take a few pictures.  The route is lined with villagers who have been shouting encouragement for hours already, even before we get there but they are still going strong.  Lifts the spirits.  Stef has a dance with them at the drinks station.  A much more relaxed day and more beautiful weather.

Day 4 – rest day, transfer to Tengchong
Convoy of coaches and trucks with the bikes.  We’re the only traffic on the deserted motorways

Day 5 – stage 3:  The Queen Stage - Along Gaoligong
185kms and not much of it flat.  Weather forecast is for rain so we set off fully togged up.  Turns out not so bad but Stef feeling ill so turns back.  I carry on alone and the sun comes out.  I’m now wearing too much.  Concern at the start is about whether I can get to the half way point before the cut off time but end up managing it with ease.  Take some photos with the locals – they all seem to want their photo with me.  But I’m not a celebrity!  A long flat stretch on a high plateau surrounded by mountains followed by a big climb to 2000m then downhill all the way back into Tengchong.  Feeling fitter already.

Day 6 – rest day, transfer to Dali
Another convoy of coaches and recovery from the hard stage yesterday

Day 7 – stage 4: The Lake Ride
A flat 115km flat stage around Dali lake, set up for the non climbers.  Lots of anxiety beforehand about getting in the right group, staying with them and managing a 40km/hr + average speed.  Another full octane start and a bit edgy.  Lots more jostling for position and no-one wants to get left in the slow group.  15km in and we’re in a group that’s catching the one in front.  It’s a big group and I’m surrounded with riders.  We’re doing 45km/hr.  All of a sudden I find my wheels in a 2 inch gully between the 2 halves of a concrete road.  I hit the deck and skid to a halt.  Fortunately no one hits me but both wheels are now punctured and rims damaged.  Good job I don’t need brakes on this stage.  Fix the punctures but all the fast groups have gone, as has my fast time.  Now the pressure is off we take some photos of the lake and get the best one of the trip.  Stef guides me the 100kms back to the finish in Dali.

Need to lick my wounds, sample the famed Dali fish soup (v good) and buy some sandpaper to smooth off the rims so that I can use my brakes on the final mountain stage tomorrow.  Transfer to Lijiang.

Day 8 – stage 5:  The Sky Ride
100km mountain stage with an early 400m climb to 2800m, a 30km descent down to the valley floor at 1700m and then a 30km climb to 3250m.  A stunning day all the way, glorious sunshine all day but the air is thin so on the downhills in the shade a little chilly.  The final 30km took 3hrs of 6-7% pretty much all the way.  Towards the end we were rewarded with views of snowy mountain tops which made it all worthwhile.  A small downhill to the finish and to be greeted with a beer at the finish line was a sweet ending.

Buses back down the mountain to Lijiang.  Everyone a bit relieved to have finished and celebrated with a big party and more familiar western food.  Then a couple of beers and pack to go home

Day 9 – Homeward bound
Early start to get to the airport, stop over in Shanghai for another amazing Italian meal and arrive back in LHR 6am Monday morning to a lovely autumn day.

What better way to end?

Next on the list are... 

Tom from the Netherlands/Beijing

“The Yunnan Gran Fondo is a great cycling event where over 7-day of riding you will build new friendships, experience beautiful and varied routes, diverse cultures and great food. All while cycling on 100% closed roads!” 

Out for dinner.

Out for dinner.

Berwick from New Zealand /Beijing

Six of us cycling friends based out of Beijing, China, all traveled together to participate in the "Colourful Yunnan Grandfondo 2019".  As we got closer to the starting point the plane collected more and more cyclists all heading in the same direction. We were amazed that the plane could fit in all of the bike boxes!

The first stage was a short and fast ITT of 8.2 kms with a hill top finish next to a monastery.  What a welcome to Yunnan!  The following 5 stages were all longer rides travelling through the hills of Yunnan.  The last stage culminated in a 30km, 2000m climb with a mountain top finish. Fantastic.

Through all of the 650 kms and 8840 m,  we rode we were all amazed at the huge turnout from all of the villages we rode through. Many dancing troupes, all dressed out in local nationality dress, greeted us with chants of "Jiayou Jiayou" and powered us on our way.  All ages from toddlers to grandparents joined in as well, with thousands of smiles and waves as we passed by.

We all had a great time in Yunnan. Riding closed roads with great organisation made the whole event a fantastic and thoroughly enjoyable time. Dining along the route, sampling the famous local food all added to the experience.

If you ever get the chance to participate in the Yunnan Grandfondo take it!  It is a beautiful part of China, full of character and wonderful landscapes.  The roads are fantastic and the whole event is a "cycling must do".


Berwick S., A New Zealander based in Beijing

Sun Tan Lines just for stage.

Sun Tan Lines just for stage.

David from Slovenia /Taiwan/Shanghai

Yunnan granfondo was my best event that I have attended in 2018. For my opinion it is one of the best organized cycling events worldwide, with great stages, diverse terrain, lots of climbing, amazing scenery and phenomenal people. It is great for everyone, for those who race for good results and for those who just want to go easy and enjoy scenery. 

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Nicole from Shanghai

Yunnan Granfondo is awesome! It takes place in a very unique region of China with beautiful landscapes, colourful culture and friendly people. All the roads are closed to normal traffic for the tour, logistics couldn´t be better. Cycling through many small villages, the villagers cheer and dance for the cyclists and create a special atmosphere.You can ride it as a race and push it as hard as you can or just take it a bit easier, stop a few times for pictures, a deep breath and to absorb the atmosphere. But be warned, the Queen´s stage is 185 km long and has a total gain of almost 3000 m altitude, which is not exactly a piece of cake and only recommended for experienced cyclists.I had a great time at this year´s Yunnan Granfondo and hope I can come back next year!

More will follow in the next few days & if you like to join in the Granfondo Yunnan 2019 please email us at ride@saddledrunk.com 

Local dinner in Mangshi

Local dinner in Mangshi