News and Photos

Day 6    5th Sept

Digne-Les-Bains /Auron

Even for a seasoned rider, this leg of the ride would have been a punishing challenge. For hobby cyclists - especially for anyone with diabetes much more so. The Team showed real grit and determination and rose to the challenge. They can now claim to have cycled up Europe’s highest road; Col de la Bonette.

Distance: 146.8km  Climb: 4,040m

mhealth Grand Tour 2014

30th August to 15th September. Barcelona to Vienna. 2300km ride, 33000m of climb.

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This was a baptism of fire for those riders joining the ride at Stage 2. Compared to Mt Ventoux, this day was the X rated version, and not one for the faint hearted. It was the first day that the riders experienced some real weather too. Thunderous clouds gathered over the mountains as they approached - almost signaling the ominous challenge ahead.  Riding through some stunning landscape, the  first part of the ride was  fairly straightforward. From Digne there was a steady climb including Col de Labouret and then a run over to Bacelonette and Jausiers. 

By the time the Team arrived for lunch in Barcelonette, they were in buoyant spirits - if a little chilly! Onward from here was the main feature of the day - Cime de Bonette. The climb in the words of one of the fittest members on the team? - ‘It was brutal’ Riding upwards towards something resembling a lunar landscape and fighting to keep their blood sugars up after so many days of successive riding, the team eventually tapped their way to the top! - reaching a maximum elevation of 2802m. The descent was cold, wet and fast. With just one small climb again before the end of the day and the hardest day’s cycling was done.

This taxing day of cycling finished in the tucked away ski resort of Auron. A few sore bodies at bedtime, but boy, what a remarkable achievement today was.

Stage Breakdown         Day     1    2    3    4    5    Rest1    6    7    8    9    10    Rest2    11    12    13    14    15