Rediscover the Beauty of Fatigue and the Thrill of the Conquest
“Today we continue to spread the authentic roots of an extraordinary sport with a great soul. We want people to rediscover the beauty of fatigue and the taste of accomplishment: the heroic cycling of Bartali and Coppi and the sacrifice that seeks out our physical boundaries where thirst, hunger, and exhaustion are felt with all their strength. It’s cycling that can spread respect and create bonds between riders. It is cycling in a healthy way and all L’Eroica participants are inspiring and beautiful to watch.”
-Giancarlo Brocci, Creator & Founder of L’Eroica
Almost 20 years ago, Giancarlo Brocci, an admirer of the values of cycling of the past, created L’Eroica – The Heroic, the famed bike race through the Chianti region of Italy’s spectacular Tuscan countryside that celebrates the spirit of old style cycling. Brocci’s desire was to reconnect people to cycling heritage that has inspired much Italian sport, literature, culture and music. Riders leave today’s modern conveniences of light-weight bike frames, clipless pedals and performance apparel behind and return to classical cycling roots – challenging their physical and mental boundaries on vintage steel-framed bikes in old style wool and leather clothing with much of the route traveling along unpaved dirt and loose gravel roads.
The international cycling event has become enormously popular and races have been introduced in Japan, Great Britain, Spain and the U.S. Eroica California held its inaugural U.S. event in scenic California wine country last year. With its rolling hills, abundant vineyards and Tuscan-like setting, race creator Brocci felt that the Central Coast wine region provided the perfect setting for Eroica California. Cyclists from all over the world took to the hills of the Central California Coast for an unforgettable ride.
Neil Shirley, former pro rider and editor of Road Bike Action magazine, selected Eroica California as the editor’s choice for Best Event of the Year in the January 2016 issue. “Vintage bikes and clothing, combined with a top-level course through the towns of the Central Coast left me buzzing for weeks. If you have a pre-1987 bike hanging in the rafters or can piece one together, this is a must-do event in 2016. You won’t be disappointed.” Shirley grew up in Templeton and his passion for road riding began on many of the roads featured on the routes. Checkout what Neil had to say about last year’s event.
Competitive Pro Cyclist Nate King was one of last year’s riders and says the race allowed him to get in touch with the reason he started riding. King stated, “The experience evolved from something frustrating into deep liberation. The requirement to tune into the terrain, into my riding style, and into the bike itself brought the journey and my companions to the forefront. Eroica is so much greater than vintage bikes. Eroica is about experiencing everything before the end and sharing it with other people. To me, Eroica is not a ride steeped in the past. It is about finding meaning in the present.”
Eroica California returns to the Central Coast April 8 through 10. This year’s ride will offer four different routes that will take riders through lush vineyards and spectacular countryside of California wine country. A new 85-mile route and the true Eroica 120-mile route offer stunning coastal segments that travel along Highway 1 through the scenic towns of Cambria and Cayucos. Click here for route details or to register.