223 daredevil riders at the 2019 Top Dolomites Gran Fondo race in Madonna di Campiglio, Italy suffered through pouring rain, freezing temperatures and miserable conditions, while 600 other registered riders ordered cappuccino and decided to sit this one out.
The courageous and tenacious riders raced for 97km and 2200m vertical up to Ponte Arche under the shadows of snowy Dolomite peaks.
After 3:05:13 of miserable riding, slogging up climbs and navigating butt-puckering high speed descents, former Russian pro Sergei Pomoshnikov (ASD COLLI BERICI) celebrated a soggy victory, followed by Venetian Tiziano Zonta (ASD SWATT CLUB) and Riccardo Zacchi (COLNAGO MG K VIS) from Como.
In the women’s race, 28-year old Jessica Leonardi (BIEMME GARDA SPORT S.S.D.) from Tuenno won in 3:25:45 with the German Astrid Schartmueller (ALPILATTE B.R.PNEU.ZANE) and Annalisa Prato (TEAM DE ROSA SANTIN) finishing 2nd and 3rd respectively.
But the real champions of the day are riders who toiled for hours and hours and hours to finish, especially Danilo Brunelli (TESSERA GIORNALIERA) who finished in 5:13:55.
Although riding across the line in 223rd place, he finished in front of the 600 riders who didn’t even both to line up.
Magnifico giro Danilo!