What's Cool In Road Cycling

Sa Calobra (Mallorca) with Fränk Schleck

With 26 hairpin bends, including its iconic 270° twist right at the very summit, there’s little wonder why the road from Sa Calobra to the Coll dels Reis is the most famous on the whole of Mallorca.

Starting at a tiny port, home to no more than around 30 people, the only way is up…..unless you happen to have a boat that is! Interestingly, Sa Calobra has adopted the name of its starting point and not its summit, which is the Coll dels Reis. A playground to many of the pros in their bid to find some winter warmth and form in the build up to the season, today we’re pleased to be joined by none other than Fränk Schleck, whose palmarès includes top honours in the 2006 Amstel Gold, victory at the summit of the legendary Alpe d’Huez and third overall in the Tour de France. Having spent several training camps in Mallorca throughout his pro career Fränk knows the island well so we thought it would be interesting to get his take on the climb, along with a few pointers and climbing tips along the way.

Such is the popularity of this road in the main season it can get very busy with tourist coaches and cars (much like the whole of Mallorca) so if you’re looking for a more peaceful experience of this beautiful Balearic island then we’d recommend keeping an eye on the forecast and heading there in December or January.

Just shy of 10 kilometres in length and with an average of 7.1% Sa Calobra may not have the raw numbers to rival the big climbs in the Pyrénées or Alps but that doesn’t stop it being an icon in its own right, with over 50,000 riders clocking their times on Strava to date and the top dogs going well under 30 minutes to the summit! Gauntlet thrown down, challenge set. Will you add your name to the fabled serpentine slopes of Sa Calobra?

Start: Sa Calobra
Length: 9.4 km
Highest Point: 682m
Elevation gain: 682m
Max gradient: 11%
Average gradient: 7.1%
Ridden in January

Looking for a new sportive to try in 2018? The why not check out https://schleckgranfondo.com on May 26th in Luxembourg.

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Stay well, ride safe and thank you for watching.

Mike Cotty
The Col Collective

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