The Heroic (L’Eroica) Update, Finally

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Last October, I entered a bike race called The Heroic.  It is an (approx) 60 mile race through rural areas on almost entirely gravel roads.  It was started in homage to another race held in Italy, called L’Eroica.  (Unfortunately, it (the L’Eroica website) is only in Italian, they keep promising an English version, but never seem to get around to it…)

The L’Eroica is a non-professional, non-sanctioned “race” held in Italy.  It is intended to celebrate and honor the history of the sport of bicycle racing.  There are some requirements regarding your bicycle and dress.  Some guys show up like this.

P1000976This was my get up.

Ha Ha!     That is an inner tube wrapped around my shoulders.  The old timers didn’t have support and had to do their own repairs, and so carried tires like this.  The early Tour De France actually forbade riders to receive any help whatsoever.

This was the bike I rode.  It is my Raleigh International.  It was made in 1973, though built with later components.  It rode very well on the gravel.  I of course could go on and on about all the details of this bike, but will save that for a separate post!

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IMG_20121006_130952This is the guy who crossed the line first,  Mark Skarpohl.  He beat a lot of younger guys.  And he rode the same bike as me, except his was stock, with some really tough gearing, too.  Way to go, Mark.

This was my indroduction to gravel racing, and it was a great experience.  I had a solid performance that I was proud of.  I will be back to this and looking into other events as well.

Vive La Gravel!!

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