If you happen to be out and about this coming June 15, don’t be surprised if you catch the sight of a host of cyclists whizzing by because the 8th Annual Giro di San Diego Gran Fondo is coming to both Escondido and Valley Center.
This prestigious and charity-focused event will have a new base in Kit Carson Park this year and is expected to draw competitors from near, far and around the globe. Four routes of varying distances will test the skills of those signed up to participate.
The GSDGF is not only a celebration of cycling but it also serves as a vehicle by which thousands of dollars are donated to worthwhile causes. This year the Giro, in concert with Life Sports Federation, will partner with Challenged Athletes Foundation’s Operation Rebound which provides funds for equipment, training and travel expenses to injured troops and first responders so that the aforementioned can benefit from the healing power of sport.
This year’s event will take place earlier on the calendar than ever before in order to take advantage of the milder weather conditions that predominate in mid-June. Also, in hopes of minimizing traffic interaction, a Saturday start was instituted.
The four race routes will incorporate some of the most picturesque and frequently traveled paths not only in the North County but in the entire San Diego region.
Obviously because of its length and a 11,100-foot elevation gain, the 105-mile Mesa Grande Century Gran Fondo route is clearly the most physically demanding. This run is highlighted by a fierce and wicked climb of the south grade of Palomar Mountain.
And the 67-mile Palomar Metric Century Gran Fondo trek is certainly no leisurely bike ride either given its substantial 7,700 climb.
The 44-mile Medio Fondo and the 26-mile Piccolo Fondo round out the card and present competitors with more than enough challenges to keep them occupied and focused.
In addition to the compelling cycling to be seen, patrons can hang out at a beer garden, partake in some great food, try their luck at a raffle or be entertained by live entertainment at the Kit Carson base camp.
Those in the local communities should be made aware that thoroughfares such as Bear Valley Parkway, Lake Wohlford Road, Cole Grade Road and Valley Center Road will be used in the Giro and could be impacted by the event.
View Routes here: www.girodisandiego.com/route-maps/