Sunday, July 15, 2012

Ride con Squadra

I was at a meeting place, Piazza Liberta, which is very close to our apartment at 7:25.  I had to wait a little, but we had 5 to ride for a tour.  Much discussion ensued between our two leaders - all in Italian (I am in Italy after all, so this should be expected) - and then we are off.  We ride out the viales to the road to Pontesieve, and Davide leads the way.  He totally hammers, and suddenly we have ridden 28 kilometers at an average of around 40 kph.  From Pontesieve, we follow the road over to Figline Valdarno, which I have ridden parts of before, but never the whole route, and it is really nice.  We are hammering a little less, but still keep some good speed going.  There are a few reasonable climbs on the way which slows the group down.  Surprisingly, I seem to be the 2nd or 3rd fastest, in particular when we are climbing.  From Figline, we climb the Passo de Sugame, then descend down into Greve.  One of the guys, Leo, is hurting a bit, and we need to slow the pace a little.  The climb from Figline to the Pass is really great, mostly gentle and a very beautiful road.  No wonder Sting choose this location for his house in Tuscany.  From Greve, we mostly motor back the easiest way.  There was discussion of different alternatives, but with Leo and Luigi slowing down, this is the best route.  Back through Tavernuzze, to Porto Romano, then back home on the viales.  Great ride.  It is fun to go with a group and it is good for me to be pushed at times.  99 k in a riding time of 3.5 hours or around 27.5 kph average.

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