Rollfast Gran Fondo, 14th September 2014, Carmel, Indiana
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Home >> What is a Gran Fondo?
 

What Is a Gran Fondo?

Gran Fondo's are mass participation cycling events that have enjoyed incredible popularity in Europe for decades and are beginning to gain momentum in North America and beyond.

Gran Fondo means many things to many people. Loosely translated, it means everything from "great foundation", “great distance” or “great endurance.” It can be a full-on race, or just a ride. It’s both a sporting event and a cultural experience. And it’s truly Italian. There’s nothing like it anywhere else in the world.

Gran Fondo's were invented in Italy in the early 1900's and have been part of Italian cycling culture and tradition for over 100 years. 

Gran Fondos are often named after famous cyclists of the past, or after companies with a long heritage in cycling. Some of the most famous Gran Fondo's include the Prosecco Cycling Classic, the Novi Colli and the Felice Gimondi.

Gran Fondo Marmotte

Take a scenic, mountainous course and add several thousand cyclists ranging from pros to eighty-year-old cycle tourists. Mix in roving and fixed mechanical and medical support, feed zones manned by cheerful volunteers serving up sandwiches, fruit, and drinks, and traffic halted at intersections to let you pass. Garnish with enthusiastic and supportive spectators lining the course. Top it off with coverage by major cycling magazines. Energy, excitement, atmosphere!-- this is gran fondo, a phenomenon that took Italy by storm.

Gran fondo does not mean "big ride"- there are running and cross country ski gran fondos too. Some cyclists ride for the satisfaction and pride of just making it to the finish line. Others want to improve upon their previous times, and to challenge themselves, their friends, their teammates. And some ride to win if the front riders can race.

Just like in Italy, every Gran Fondo event includes challenging routes, electronic timing, fantastic giveaways, a consumer expo, well-stocked aid stations, mobile tech support and a fun post-race party.

Some of the larger events, as in Italy, have completely closed roads, for example, the Gran Fondo New York. Standards vary, so we aim to give a clear and concise guide from 2014 onwards, for each event, so riders know what to expect or in some cases, demand! This doesn't detract from the smaller events, it's all about knowing what your'e getting for your money.

In 2009 there were a handful of events, now in 2014 there are expected to be well over 125 events in North America alone and the scene is growing very quickly.

We aim to make you aware of all the events, news and results in one central hub for the North America, Europe and beyond in, english.

You never know - one day you might find yourself in the Italian Dolomites riding a Gran Fondo with 10,000 feet of climbing with thousands of cyclists from all over the world? Or - travelling across to the West coast to try out the Sierra Nevada mountains, or the east coast Allegheny mountains. What about the Rocky mountains?

Turn a dream into a reality and let Gran Fondo Guide help you along the way ...

One thing is for sure - cycling is part of the future in a big way on a global scale.

The start of the 2013 Giro d'Italia Los Angeles-Pasadena - some 1,000 cyclists took part from all over California and from abroad

Gran Fondo Los Angeles


About Gran Fondo Guide

We aim to give our rapidly growing community immediate and full access to all that is happening in the Gran Fondo scene - whether rider or organiser.

We do not organise any events ourselves, we work with ALL event organisers, sponsors to support and promote all their events in the best way we can.

We're on facebook and twitter too and you can contact us here if you have any queries and want any more events added.

Since we started in January 2013, we have had over 100,000 visitors, mainly from North America and Europe.

 

Our Mission


Our mission is to bring you the most comprehensive, up to date news, results and reviews on Gran Fondo cycling events in North America and beyond, in English.

To promote health, well being, sustainability, Italian cycling culture and international and domestic travel.

Gran Fondo Guide is "THE" central hub for Gran Fondos in the United States, Canada, Italy and beyond.

We primarily list the top and newcoming Gran Fondo's in North America, Europe and beyond, but due to demand.

We hope to cover a wealth of road cycling events including Bike Expo's (Centuries and Doubles in North America) and Sportive cycling events worldwide.

 

Difficulty


In order to guide and support cyclists of all abilities, we have graded the difficulty of events as below:

  • A - Basically flat, no steep hills
  • B - Gently rolling terrain with one or two short hills
  • C - Moderate terrain with rolling short steep hills or moderate, sustained climbs
  • D - Difficult terrain with longer, steeper hills
  • E - Extreme terrain with frequent steep hills and long sustained climbs
  • F - Ultra Distance and Climbing for events well over 100 miles
 

Check Back Regularly

Were constantly confirming the dates and details of thousands of events across the United States, Europe and beyond.

We encourage you to check back regularly - Click here to visit our 2014 Gran Fondo events calendar.

 

 

 
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February 12 2013 - NEWS: What is a Gran Fondo?