Gran Fondo Matildica is an annual cycling event held in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy. The event is named after Matilda of Canossa, a powerful noblewoman who ruled the region during the Middle Ages. The event is also a UCI Grand Fondo World Series event, rated by Strambecco as one of Italy’s best gran fondo events.
The Gran Fondo Matildica has gained a reputation as one of Italy’s most challenging and scenic cycling events. The routes vary in distance and difficulty, ranging from a 48km route to a grueling 160km route with over 3,000 meters of climbing. The event attracts amateur and professional cyclists from around the world, with participants coming to challenge themselves on the hilly terrain and take in the stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
The event typically occurs in late spring or early summer, when the weather in Emilia-Romagna is warm and sunny. The event’s starting point is usually in the city of Reggio Emilia, and the routes take participants through the picturesque hills and valleys of the region. Along the way, cyclists will pass through charming medieval towns, vineyards, and fields of sunflowers. Emilia-Romagna is known for its delicious cuisine, and the Gran Fondo Matildica is no exception. At rest stops along the route, participants can enjoy local specialties like handmade pasta, cured meats, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
The UCI Gran Fondo World Series is a prestigious international cycling competition featuring amateur riders worldwide. It is a series of events that take place across various countries and continents, with riders competing in long-distance races that often cover challenging terrain. The races are designed to mimic the format of professional cycling races, with riders being timed and ranked according to their performance. The UCI Gran Fondo World Series allows amateur cyclists to experience the thrill of competitive racing while promoting cycling as a healthy and sustainable form of transportation. The only current US qualifying event is the Cheaha Challenge, held annually in May in Jacksonville, Alabama.