Tuscany has had a long association with road cycling and the region has spawned a number of illustrious champions of the sport including 1980s superstar Mario Cippolini and two-times winner of the Tour de France Gino Bartali.
So there was much excitement and cause for celebration when it was announced that the World Cycling Road Race Championships would take place in the region in September 2013 – the first time in its 80 year history.
A select group of us booked Casa di Nonnas for the week of the races – ideally located between Lucca and Florence, it meant that we were able to see most of the major race events throughout the week, including the culmination of the event, the elite men’s road race from Lucca to Florence – ridden in conditions that were more akin to a wet November in England!
After a very long day at the race it was great to get back to the home comforts (and king-size bed) of the Casa for a restful night’s sleep, followed by a lazy breakfast on the terrace in the warm October sunlight the following morning.
As well as watching the races, we even managed to get a bit of cycling in ourselves during the week. picking up our hire bikes in Montecatini before heading for the hills for a 100k spin, punctuated by a rather large and lengthy lunch in Lucca (and in my case, a couple of punctures as well!)
A great stay in a fantastic place – couldn’t have been better.
Watch the video by clicking the link below :