What’s a Gran Fondo?
THE OREGON GRAN FONDO
Gran Fondo is Italian and translates approximately to “Big Ride.” Gran Fondo rides have their origin in Italy and France, where the general public was invited to ride a single stage of one of the professional grand tours, the Tour de France and the Giro d’Italia, after the pro race went through.
It’s a celebration of cycling. Everyone, of any age and ability, was invited to participate. Ex-professionals and elite racers lined up side by side with 80-year-old farmers toting baguettes in the baskets of their 1920’s era commuter bikes. Family members lined the route and handed out food and water bottles. While some choose to ride fast and test their endurance, by definition, a Gran Fondo is not a race, but rather a mass start event designed to draw the community together and give everyone a chance to enjoy the fun of riding a bike on the same course as the pros. It is truly a ride for everyone!
At The Oregon Gran Fondo, teams and individuals who want to race will do that on the 117-mile Gran route, but all three routes — the Gran, the 71-mile Medio and family friendly Piccolo feature recreational riding.