To become Heroic takes a little bit of stamina; one needs to nurture a strong predilection for anything that smells of old lace, to own or borrow a bike (racing) built before 1987, even with evident changes to the chassis and brakes; wear a wool sweater with a cyclist’s collar, or maybe even not. One should also not be allergic to dust, be willing to share any inconvenience with joy, cramped tables and numerous toasts of red wine to help swallow the Ribollita, cultivate a philosophy that elects the slowness in the category of the spirit, have a certain disposition to dressing up. And of course you have to participate in the first, in order of seniority, of events for lovers of the two wheels with pedals inspired by the cycling of the good old days: L’Eroica, in fact. It runs at a slow pace, please allow the oxymoron, every year at the beginning of autumn, when the vines are still laden with bunches of Sangiovese, along the dirt roads, and not, in the Chianti with start and finish in Gaiole. This year, referring to the photographs in the service, was the eighteenth edition.
Born from the passion of Giancarlo Brocci, and a hundred friends who attended the world premiere, the event has been so successful that the heroes of 2014 were a little more than five thousand (10% women), drawn at random (logistics do not allow more at the moment) among the many who sent the application form, and already boasts replicas in different countries, even in Japan. There are four paths, a choice of 38, 75, 135 (considered difficult) and 205 (for superheroes) kilometers. The handlebar mustache is not mandatory, but they help, and also the calf length skirts are welcome, despite the awkwardness. Members of the Italian rifle regiment (the bersaglieri), postmen, dairy errand boys, newsboys and red-haired young victorian ladies are all considered guests of honor.
Rumors spread in the breaking news about a sort of twinning in the process of ratification between L’Eroica and Wolfbiketour, the cycling manifestation that in September debuted successfully in Sulmona (Central Abruzzo’s capital and home of the Maiella National Park) whose itinerary allows you to travel in a wondrous web of scenic roads that connect the parks of the greenest region in Europe.