3T-sponsored epic gravel challenge slated for May 21st in Franciacorta region
3T has finalized the routes for Italy’s first all-comers gravel event – the Jeroboam Challenge. The Jeroboam Challenge takes place in Italy’s beautiful Franciacorta territory, at the foothills of the Alps in the region of Lombardy, on May 20-21. It’s presented by 3T with Giangi’s Bike Snc and the Patrocinio del comune di Erbusco, and is open to all comers for a mere 45 euros.
Franciacorta has an extraordinarily varied pastoral landscape bordering on the beautiful Lago díIseo, and is renowned worldwide for its wine appellation. Viticulture is mostly based on the small estates specializing in the Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Blanc grape varieties. For international travelers, it’s easily accessed from Bergamo’s Orio Al Serio Airport (BGY).
We’re offering three distances, all starting from the town square in Erbusco.
The Jeroboam 300 is a true epic at 300km and nearly 5000m elevation gain – not for the faint of heart! To begin with, the route traverses the Franciacorta vineyards, over undulating hills on beautiful gravel roads. As it heads north, it moves into the rougher and tougher mountains. The gravel and dirt tracks get narrower and rockier – some stretches may be barely ridable.
Turning west, it loops round the top of beautiful Lago d’Iseo, offering stunning vistas. On the west bank, things don’t get any easier, with some even steeper ramps on the way back south to the finish in Erbusco. There you can join the celebrations, if you have any energy left for partying. This is a unique chance for Èlite endurance riders to boast that they completed the first edition of the Jereboam 300 Challenge.
The Magnum 150 covers much of the same terrain but omits some of the high mountains to the north-west – obviously not so demanding as Jereboam 300 but at 150km still a tough endurance test even for hard riders.
There is nothing standard about the Standard 75. You start on the same roads as the longer distance events, winding through the Franciacorta vineyards and the beautiful landscapes of the Northern Italian Lake district. It’s flatter than the longer events, but the gravel is just as tough and the views just as stunning. What’s more, this one is actually a race, so the action is sure to be fast and furious. (You must produce a doctor’s certificate of fitness to enter this event.)
So what’s with the names? As wine buffs will know, they are the names given to the several sizes of wine bottle. The Jeroboam is the largest, containing 300cl (Magnum 150cl, Standard 75cl). Franciacorta’s most delicious sparkling wines are available in this bodacious size, and the prospect of a glass or so of the Nectar of the Gods at the after-party in Erbusco should sustain you on the road, whichever distance you choose!
Get the full details of the event and enter at: jeroboam.bike