What's Cool In Road Cycling

In Pomarance the Green Fondo Paolo Bettini-Vittoria-La Geotermia is a Huge Success

Stefano Cecchini was the men’s winner and among the ladies Claudia Bertoncini triumphed on the 133 km-long granfondo route.

In Pomarance there was every element you could ask for to make for a perfect day of cycling: sunshine, spring temperatures, fantastic routes, excellent food and wine and lots of participants along with the high profile riders. Everything went off smoothly at the Green Fondo Paolo Bettini-Vittoria-La Geotermia, both before and after the race. Almost 1300 enthusiasts lined up on the starting grid in piazza Sant’Anna at 9:30 this morning. There were a lot of Tuscans, but there were also groups that came from all over Italy and lots of foreigners.

“Sports, and particularly cycling, mean everything to Pomarance,” says the Mayor of Pomarance Loris Martignoni. “This year the Granfondo has reached its XVIII edition and it has become a tradition which has grown year after year and brought us tremendous satisfaction. If any of this is possible, it is only thanks to the commitment and passion shown by the staff from ASD Velo Etruria Pomarance, the association that organizes the event with exceptional dedication. They can also count on the support of an extraordinary champion like Paolo Bettini.”

“I’m happy to be here and to be among all these fans,” says two-time World Champion and Olympic Gold medallist Paolo Bettini, who is also spokesman for the event. “It is days like these that make you realize just how wonderful cycling is. The Green Fondo isn’t a race so much as it is a party. This spirit has always been the inspiration for this event, which is growing year after year thanks to the extraordinary passion of our friends at ASD Velo Etruria Pomarance. I’ve known them and worked with them for more than 20 years. This year the Green Fondo is particularly special, considering that a little over a month from now, the 6th stage of Giro d’Italia will be passing over these very same roads. May the 14th is the first time the Giro will touch down here in Pomarance, and for us it will definitely be another marvellous day of cycling and celebration.”

Team ASD La Bagarre dominated the event, scoring a splendid triple wins as they arrived at the finish line in perfect formation. First came Stefano Cecchini (who already won here in Pomarance last year on the mediofondo route, and who also won the gruelling 2014 Maratona Dles Dolomites). His time was 3.36.17 at an average speed of 36 km/h. Vincenzo Pisani came in second and Krys Hubert Jacek was third. Claudia Bertoncini (Velo Club Maggi) in 4.12.37 was crowned the women’s champion. Second place for Daniela Passalacqua (Dueruote Scott) and third Ilaria Fischi (Enegan Cicli).

“Today was a fantastic day for us,” explains the winner Cecchini. “In the first part of the route my team mates and I tried to control the race. Then in the final we attempted a long break and we managed to make it all the way to the finish line. We would like to dedicate this wonderful triple play to our team’s founder, Francesco Novelli, who sadly passed away too young, not too long ago. He was only 38 years old.”

In the 85- km medio fondo, victory belonged to Davide Lombardi (Lenzi Bike ASD) with a time of 2.14.06 and an average speed of 36.69 km/h. Alessandro Griselli (Gc Falaschi) was second and Alessio Ricciardi (Team Ale Cipollini) third. In the women’s field Francesca Martinelli (Uisp Massa) won with a time of 2.26.08. Silvia Cattani (Ontraino) came in second and third place went to Chiara Turchi (Gs Ramini).

And to wrap things up, after the race the organizing committee offered everyone present, cyclists or not, a great party and typical Tuscan luncheon, featuring pasta in wild boar sauce, oven roasted pork loin and homemade pies.

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Image credits
001_bettini.JPG – Paolo Bettini 1
002_bettini.JPG – Paolo Bettini 2
003_start.JPG – start
004_lungo_M.JPG – podio lungo M
005_medio_F.JPG – podio medio F

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