The ride I've been looking forward to the most, the Sella Ronda. And the conclusion is simple: this belongs on your bucket list. The lap itself is 51.4 kilometers, contains 4 climbs for a total of just under 1700m+.
The nice thing is that we of course started from Bolzano again, so we first had to go 50 kilometers there and 50 kilometers back again. Which in both cases was absolutely no punishment. In fact, you climb from Bolzano for 50 kilometers towards the round. The first 22,5 kilometers are a bit more than false flat, then the real climbing starts. 27.5 km at an average of 5% to Plan de Gralba. That sounds a lot less motivating than it really is. The road bends well and there are plenty of points where you can relax your legs. Above all, do not forget to look around you here. At Plan de Gralba we had the first stop, then we took a left and the feast continued.
The first climb for us on the lap was the Passo Gardena. Racing up this treacherous little hill of just under 6 kilometers! Don't be fooled by the 4.4% average, you also ride 1.5 flat or slightly downhill. Once there, the view is beyond description. In fact, the photos in the article don't even do justice to the beauty and especially the views. The second climb on the route was also timed, the Passo Campolongo. 6 kilometers to be precise. Beautiful roads, even more beautiful landscapes and oh yes... I was writing a race report. After today I'm 46th in the general classification... very satisfied myself.
What the organization did well today is to let people ride a lot of the lap at their own pace. Not staying behind the electric car (it's a Green Event!) as a group, but going on at your own pace. The Passo Pordoi with 33 switchbacks and a summit that lies at 2237 meters was absolutely the highlight of the week for me. Ok, there are two more days to come, but this will not be surpassed. The last of the 4 climbs, the Passo Sella, we (for me secretly unfortunately) went over as a group again.
Lunch with a huge plate of pasta and ice cream for dessert in Gralba. And then enjoy another 50 kilometers without actually having to do any stairs. What a FAN-TAS-TIC DAY!