Federico Pellegrino at the Maratona Dles Dolomites: The World Sprint Champion in cross-country skiing talks about his journey on two wheels.
“The day” has arrived. 9000 cyclists from all over the world have been waiting for this day as if it were Christmas. 2 July, the day the thirstiest edition of the Maratona dles Dolomites – Enel takes place. A magical occasion in which the Dolomites show themselves in all their magnificent beauty to those who are brave enough to take them on with their bikes. The course is completely closed to traffic for the duration of this event that for more than thirty years has been the object of desire of many passionate cyclists. 3 routes travel through this “Wonderland”: the Sellaronda (55 km with 1780 altitude gain), the medium course (106 km with 3130 m altitude gain) and the long course (138 km with 4230 altitude gain). Over 4500 participants from our country, on a total of 9000 participants from 65 countries.
Many famous faces from the world of sports will be at the starting line, among which that of the World Sprint Champion of cross country skiing, Federico Pellegrino, an athlete with the Fiamme Oro of Moena. Federico will participate for the second time. Last year he broke the ice with the shortest route but this time he has decided to take on the medium route. His Specialized Tarmac is ready to be mounted with a 36-50 on 27 for maximum agility and with medium profile wheels.
“I know these places really well because during the winter they form the perfect backdrop to my cycling. To see them during the summer, together with thousands of other persons, without skis on my feet but from the saddle of the bicycle, is an emotion that I wanted to experience a second time. This year, if the weather allows it, I will take on the medium route. I haven’t specifically trained for this race because my athletic obligations do not permit me to deviate from my ski training. The bike for me is that very special instrument that helps me to recover or to carry out organic training of 4-5 hours without having to put on the roller skis. Tomorrow I will try to be very prudent in distributing my forces and will confront the first four passes trying not to exert my body too much and deplete my energy reserves. Some days ago, I tried the Giau pass with the roller skis and I am aware that I will need to get to this point on the route with still enough autonomy to avoid risking emptying out my energy reservoirs and pay for this over the next days. I just finished a training camp and on Monday I will leave for another. I cannot afford to arrive there too tired. For an athlete like me, but above all for those enthusiasts who are here to enjoy all the wonders of this race, the tips I'm giving are basically two. The first is to have a smart nutritional strategy ready aimed at supporting such an effort. It is worth doing a good carbohydrate load in the days before, to have a light breakfast with low-glycemic carbohydrates the morning of the race, and to eat energy bars at the end of each of the passes and some gels towards the end of the race. These are certainly nutritional strategies to be tested in training. I have the fortune to be accompanied by the scientific team of Enervit, a great company that is all about having the correct nutritional strategies in place, but each one of you should have a nutritional strategy ready with quality products that can guarantee the right amount of energy. My second advice is actually more of a recommendation. The Marathon of the Dolomites is an emblem of the world of cycling. Let’s try to enjoy it with the right dose of caution and steer clear from risks. The downhills are long and there are many cyclists on the road. Let's be careful. '
Federico is already looking ahead to the World Cup events at the end of November and the mid-February winter Olympics in South Korea, but for the next 48 hours his main care will be to enjoy the Dolomites and the magic of an event like this.
The theme of the 2017 edition will be Amur, that is, love in Ladin. Costa, the patron of this event, said this: "Love is like cycling. It sets you free, it surprises you, fills your heart, opens your lungs and brain. It's all a matter of rhythm: finding the right one is important, decisive, otherwise you will hit the wall. "
And with this we of Bikevo leave you and wish you the most wonderful Marathon Dles Dolomites of your life!