Giro d'Italia "Ride Every Kilometre" Week 1 - Tuscany to Apennines

  • Location

    Bologna to San Marino

  • Duration

    11 Days | 10 Nights

  • Length

    8km - 235km daily

  • Climb

    700 - 3,900m daily

10 May 2019 - 20 May 2019

Limited spaces remaining: Emilia-Romagna ... Tuscany ... Lazio ... Puglia ... Abruzzo and Le Marche... it will be warm and beautiful as we ride around central Italy. Join us to Ride Every Kilometre of 9 stages of the 102nd Giro d'Italia, in some of the best cycle regions of Italy.

“There is nothing quite like riding on the full route of the Giro d'Italia, with thousands of supporters on the road cheering us on and the peloton only an hour or two behind us.” Keith Tuffley, Founder of Grand Tours Project and the mind behind the "Ride Every Kilometre" concept.

We're offering the opportunity for amateur cyclists to ride every kilometre of stages 1-9, on the same day as the race. We'll be riding some of the best cycle routes in Italy as the Giro winds its way around central Italy. Starting in Bologna the Corsa Rosa heads south to the regions of Tuscany and Lazio before crossing Italy to the east coast from Cassino to San Giovanni Rotondo.

You don’t need to be an elite athlete, but you must be fit and strong, and be ready for back-to-back long days in the saddle. We will start early and sometimes not finish till 4:30pm, just one hour ahead of the race leaders. However, we will always ensure we have enough time on the route each day for coffee, lunch and photo stops.

There are very limited spaces on this tour, with a ratio of 7 cyclists : 1 guide. As "Official Tour Operator" of the Giro d'Italia, we have special access to the full race route, so we will have our support vehicle with us the whole distance, all the way to the finish line each day. Riding on the race course just a few hours before the pros makes this an unforgettable experience. Check out this story from one of our 2018 guests to be convinced!

This tour is being hosted in conjunction with the "Ride with Mike" project. After dealing with a number of life changing events such as kidney cancer and sustaining injuries that caused bleeding on the brain and serious neck injuries, Mike's goal is to raise awareness and money for a charity close to his heart - the National Institute of Integrative Medicine (NIIM). Mike has currently raised AUD$479,000 for NIIM, and he is aiming for $1 million. We are delighted to support Mike by donating all profits from our Grand Tours Project "Ride Every Kilometre" trips to NIIM.

If riding every kilometre of 6 stages sounds a bit much, or if you haven't the time for a full week off, then you may wish to join for just 3 stages. Contact us if this interests you.

We are also offering a more relaxed option involving 60-100km of riding each day - our Giro "Experience" tours.

Total price: From €4,950

  • "Ride Every Kilometre" of 9 stages, on the race route, just hours before the pros
  • Enjoy the beauty of Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Lazio, Puglia, Abruzzo and Le Marche
  • Watch the Giro starts fight for the pink jersey
  • Expert planning and support from our team (guides, mechanics, drivers)
  • On every stage, enjoy the unique atmosphere of the Giro and the support of the public
  • On at least one of the stages, cycle across the finish line, stand on the winners podium, and watch the race from the Giro VIP zone with a prosecco in hand
  • Bianchi bike rental available (Infinito CV disc + Ultegra di2 electronic)
  • Day 1 - 10 May

    Benvenuto in Italia

    We'll meet you at Bologna airport, and transport you to our lovely hotel in the centre of Bologna where we will be staying for the first two nights - right in the heart of the 102nd edition of the Giro d’Italia. Our mechanic will help you unpack and build your bike, we'll hand out the team kit, and make final preparations before tomorrow's ride. After discussing the week's programme, we'll attend the Team Presentation in the VIP zone, and then enjoy a hearty Italian dinner in the city centre while enjoying the buzzing atmosphere before the Big Start.

  • Day 2 - 11 May

    Stage 1 - Bologna - San Luca

    8.2 km (Individual Time Trial)

    Let the race commence! Get your first taste of the excitement of the Individual Time Trial. It’s a short ride 8.2 km in total, with the first 6 km on flat, straight roads through the streets of Bologna, but then the final 2.1 km is the San Luca climb: a 9.7% average gradient and peaking at 16%. OUCH … a real leg burner! Maybe we'll ride the route 2 or 3 times to enjoy the atmosphere, and then we'll watch the pros from the luxury of the VIP Giro Club. This course is designed to set the tone of the Giro from the word go and we expect to see the podium lined with familiar cycling heroes!

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 3 - 12 May

    Stage 2 - Bologna - Fucecchio


    We’ll start early, riding out from our hotel and joining the start of Stage 2. Today’s hilly profile will see us ride into one of Italy’s most scenic regions - Tuscany - with its beautiful vineyards, hilltop medieval villages, and idyllic views. We'll ride over Passo della Futa (903m), the hamlet of Castra (227m), and San Baronto (328m), before arriving in Fuecchio for the stage finish. After successfully completing the 2nd stage we will transfer to our hotel in Vinci ahead of stage 3. Tuscany is also famous for its food and wine, so we'll be enjoying a delicious dinner, a just reward after a big day on the bike.

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 4 - 13 May

    Stage 3 - Vinci - Orbetello


    Stage 3 starts from Vinci to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the birth of the Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci. It will be another pleasant early morning cycle as we head northwards through the Tuscan landscape in the direction of Orbetello. It's the first flat stage of the tour, and therefore the first day of teamwork in our fast and efficient peloton. Orbetello is both the finish for stage 3 and the start for stage 4, so once we arrive we can rest and enjoy watching the pros sprint to the finish line. It will be a relaxing evening with a super seafood dinner, and early bed at this seaside town.

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 5 - 14 May

    Stage 4 - Orbetello - Frascati


    Riding at sunrise is always a lovely experience, especially as we travel through the lovely Tuscan countryside and then ride nearly the full length of Lazio. And with this long stage, we'll be starting early to ensure we beat the pros to the finish line. We'll ride inland and south towards Frascati, passing by Italy's capital city, Rome. This stage finish last featured 21 years ago in 1998, won by the Italian legend Mario Cipollini. Mario is a long-standing friend of Grand Tours Project, so who knows ... maybe he'll join us for a ride as we approach one of his many victory towns!

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 6 - 15 May

    Stage 5 - Frascati - Terracina


    Today is a flat stage ... very flat. And after the previous three long stages, we'll enjoy this shorter day by working as a team to maximise our speed and rest our legs. We will work on our peloton skills, and enjoy the speed as we travel south. Maybe today is the day when we see just how fast we can go compared to the pros ... and after all this practice, it’s only matter of time before we form a Grand Tours Project pro team.

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 7 - 16 May

    Stage 6 - Cassino - San Giovanni Rotondo


    After the first 5 days of cycling through three lovely Italian regions, we'll cross over the centre of Italy to ride from to the east coast, from Cassino to San Giovanni Rotondo. This marks not only the southernmost point on the 2019 route, but also the start of 3 hilly stages through the beautiful Apennine mountains - we love this region of Italy, and it offers some of the most picturesque cycling in the whole country. This is a big day, with 233km to ride and on a tough route - so it will be an early start and a consistent pace. After the final climb to San Marco Lamas (550m) we will enjoy a flat finish and a well-deserved gelato or two!

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 8 - 17 May

    Stage 7 - Vasto - L'Aquila


    Today we begin to ride north along the east coast before cutting inland towards the final climb leading to L'Aquila. 2019 marks ten years after the terrible earthquake of 2009, and to make the occasion the stage will finish in front of the Basilica on the avenue of Collemaggio. From experience, we can guarantee that the expectant crowds will have odd looks on their faces when they see us out in front, thinking we are a pro team in the lead ... so enjoy this special moment of exuberant cheering! Maybe after an autograph request or two from the public we will transfer you to Tortoretno Lido for the penultimate stage of our Giro adventure.

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 9 - 18 May

    Stage 8 - Tortoreto - Lido Pesaro


    Today we will ride almost the length of Le Marche – it’s a long stage but a beautiful one. Rolling out of Tortoreno Lido, we will enjoy beach views along the Adriatic coastline, before starting the first climb of the day, Monte delle Cesane (500m), which is referred to as “il piccolo Mortirolo” (the little Mortirolo) ... although if you’re riding all 21 stages you’ll have the chance to ride the real Mortirolo during stage 16! As we reach the top the views are spectacular - we’ll stop for a quick photo, fill up our bottles and enjoy the views over the Gola del Furo (gorge). The stage will finish in Pesaro, birthplace of composer Gioacchino Rossini (of The Barber of Seville fame).

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 10 - 19 May

    Stage 9 - Riccione to San Marino (Individual Time Trial)

    34.7km (Individual Time Trial)

    After a short time trial on stage 1, it’s only appropriate to the finish the week with another slightly longer and more demanding time trial. This 34.7km stage departs the coastal town of Riccione and takes us up to San Marino, with a hill climb for the final 15km. We expect to see significant gaps in the general classification ahead of the rest day. Our team will be sure to offer you a glass of red Sangiovese wine from the region to celebrate your awesome achievement on this official ‘wine stage’. Congratulations - you will have achieved one of cycling's great challenges - riding every km of a full week of the Giro d'Italia, on the same day as the race itself!

    View stage routes and profiles
  • Day 11 - 20 May


    After last night's celebratory dinner and this morning's sleep-in, hearty breakfast, and good Italian coffee, we'll help you with packing your bike and transport you to Bologna airport for your trip home. Or can we tempt you to stay longer for the second week? Or maybe return to Verona in two weeks for the final stage? In any event, you'll be taking home memories, achievements, new friendships and bragging rights that will last forever.

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