Launched in 2009 with the San Diego Gran Fondo, Gran Fondo USA will offer four events in 2011. The new season kicks off in San Diego, California on 10 April and finishes seven months later on 20 November in Miami, Florida.
On 26 June Gran Fondo Colnago Los Angeles makes its debut, departing from Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. While the sophmore edition of the Gran Fondo Colnago Philadelphia takes place on 14 August.
Gran Fondo means “Big Ride” in Italian. The Gran Fondo USA events are modeled after the long distance, mass-participation cycling rides – not races – which are immensely popular in Italy. Participation is open to recreational and competitive amateur cyclists, and tens of thousands of riders of all abilities participate. Just like in Italy, each Gran Fondo USA event includes a mass start, and three challenging routes: a 100 mile length named the Gran Fondo, a 50 mile Medio Fondo and a 25 mile Piccolo Fondo.
Each stop also includes a consumer expo (known as Piazza Gran Fondo), stocked aid stations, mobile tech support, a VIP gala night and a post-ride Italian lunch. “The success of our events comes from our strong commitment to the ‘Made in Italy’ theme,” revealed co-founder Gerevini.
Gran Fondo USA is especially proud to announce its new partnership with Alitalia Airlines, which it considers a strategic ally in supporting cycling enthusiasts traveling to and from Italy. Vice President of Marketing Carlo Pittis said, “Like Alitalia, Gran Fondo USA brings the spirit of Italy to America, in this case through the great tradition of Italian cycling. We look forward to lending our uniquely Italian brand to the events and sharing in the fun and excitement of the rides with the people of each city.”
The 2011 Gran Fondo USA series is also supported by: title sponsor Colnago and charter sponsors Campagnolo, Fulcrum, Gaerne, Speedplay, Ride Strong Bike Tours and Active.com are new partners FSA, Cuore Italiano, Villa Sandi, the Italian Trade Commission, GU Energy, Il Borro and Castiglion del Bosco wineries (owned by the Ferragamo family), Prologo, Maxxis, Italy Bike Hotel, and Il Palagetto winery.
For additional information about upcoming events, visit www.granfondousa.com