As the weather forecast indicates rain for today before noon, I decided to start early.
Small breakfast before departure.
After breakfast, 0730, I cycle down to the official starting line. We are in Italy and I am pretty early, nothing is prepared yet. This situation makes it easy for me to start now, as I am not part of the official starters.
After two hours of cycling, rain came up, light later stronger. Everything goes smooth, climbing starts early, the first peaks are in the clouds and it seems as if they had been covered in snow until the day before the race. I have to keep the cadence high, it is cold up here.
Just climbing and climbing.
Around lunch, I decide to take it easy and find a nice place to have some lunch. lentil soup and as second dish a seafood risotto, really good.
Seafood Risotto, delicious.
Getting back on track, many of the supported riders had already been passing by. Crazy, one man and a van full of support. Not my idea of cycling, nevermind.
Riding down the hills, it seems as if there was marble on the road, small but sharp pieces. There was an hour without rain, first flat in front, tubular. Worst Case, I had to go on tubulars, my other rims had not been ready to ride. Checking the tubular, where to locate the power sealant milk from the inside, it showed up that there were more than ten punctures. No need to hope for a quick repair.
Can you count the punctures? I cannot.
Pack all my stuff and start walking. Several support cars offer their support, many people in the villages also. It just gave me some kind of mental support, which had a great value for me.
After more than three hours of walking, on Saturday evening, after 1900, I finally found an open bicycle shop, that could really offer my tubulars.
An Italian miracle in Avezzano!
Slowly, it is getting dark, rain slows down at this moment, climbing again.
Stronger rain came up around 2300 and my power supply met some serious trouble. Connections got wet by the time, no more charging. As my garmin already stopped operation before, I had to rely on my phone. 0330 in the rainy morning, power off. Where to go now? No paper map in my hands, have a rest and dry the connectors, hopefully.
Found a dry place at Crazy Horse Bar. Sounded like a Place that is open until late. But no, at 0530 they opened up this bar. So, I had a rest of two hours, at least. I did not need to find an Italian breakfast, I was invited for a cafe and a cornetto con crema. I could charge my phone, and headed forward towards Rocca Massima.
Beautiful scenery, less rain, heavy deep hanging clouds and steep roads. Steep roads up towards the peak.
Cappuccino in Rocca Massimo
Short Cappuccino on top, then heading to the coast of Latina, winds with me. At the sea, strong winds and many kite surfer.
Latina beach, walked off cleats, wind
At this point I realized that I walked off my cleats almost completely. This weather does not invite for resting. Heading back to Pescara, beautiful landscape, clouds full of rain ahead.
On the roads of Roccasecca, quite a lot of traffic. Only small room for bicycles, riding fast directly next to the cars, the stones on the roads had been visible, cleats cannot lift the bike amymore. Bang! Hitting the small rocks with high speed, this bang was a really loud noise, tried to break down safely, this was a real challenge. The hole in my tire was huge, once more no chance for my sealing milk, everything ran out here.
No chance to repair that flat on the road.
This was it, go home.
Only about 200 kms before the finish line, I had to give up this race, not happy at all. Only thing, it was material defect again. No physical weakness, at all.
Getting on the train, it took me more hours on trenitalia to get to Silvi, than just going on by bike.