The new GardaConcierge guide, dedicated to cyling in the Lake Garda area, presents the most important annual events held in the Lake Garda area.
Bardolino Bike Race – Bardolino
The Bardolino Bike Race opens the cycling season on Lake Garda. It is normally held in the month of March. While the cycle route varies every year, the lakeside area close to Parco Villa Carrara in Bardolino is always the start and finish of the cycle race. From here, the race takes participants to the hinterland of the Olive Riviera, where an approximately circa 50 km long path with a height of 1000 metres leads through the vineyards and hilly area of the high plateau above Bardolino. The road which participants cycle on is largely unsurfaced and boasts some steep slopes and descents.
South Garda Bike Race – Medole
Also in March, towards the end of the month, the South Garda Bike Race is held. The cycle marathon passes through the southern area of Lake Garda. The mountain bike race normally comprises two routes, a longer, 60 km one and a shorter one, of half the distance. The difference in height is between 600 and 800 metres on the first route and approximately half on the second. Both roads start and end in Medole, a town in the province of Mantua that has been hosting the cycle race for 10 years.
MTB Garda Marathon/Cycle Marathon of the Town of Garda – Garda
It is arguably the most important and famous cycle race on Lake Garda. The MTB Garda Marathon attracts – together with the Cycle Marathon of the Town of Garda – annually more than 2000 participants. The cycle race is held in April and comprises two different races, the MTB Garda Marathon and the shorter Cycle Marathon of the Town of Garda. The first, approximately 60 km long race leads from the town of Garda up to Monte Baldo and covers a height of over 2000 metres. The shorter cycle marathon is half as long and high. It also features a great number of single tracks.
Durello Cycle Marathon – Verona
San Giovanni Ilarione, in the northeast of the province of Verona and at the border to the province of Vicenza, hosts an event that attracts more than one thousand athletes from all over the world every year. The Durello cycle marathon is held in April in the Val d’Alpone area, where the river of the same name flows. The cycle marathon offers two routes, the longer, 50 km route is twice as long as the shorter one. In 2016, the Durello cycle marathon will be held for the 14th time.
Colnago Cyling Festival – Desenzano del Garda
On the southwestern shore of Lake Garda, Desenzano del Garda hosts the Colnago Cycling Festival over an entire weekend in the month of May. The festival features exhibitors of the most important companies in the sector and various cycling competitions. Among these are the “Granfondo” with three routes, the “Giro del Lago” with two and the Garda Legend Race with only one route. All three paths of the “Granfondo” lead through the area west of Lake Garda and range in distance of 70 km on the shortest route to 150 km on the longest. The two routes of the “Giro del Lago” lead along Lake Garda for 150 or 200 km. The route of the Garda Legend Race winds through the hinterland of the Valtenesi area for 70 km and covers a height of about 1000 metres. The Colnago Cycling Festival also includes a competition for children from 6 to 13 years with the Baby Bike Race.
La Mesa Bike Race – Rivoli Veronese
Also in the month of May, the La Mesa Bike Race is held, organised by the “ASD Baldo Bike Giomas” association. This bicycle race with various route distances is held in Rivoli Veronese in the Adige Vally. Participants of the “La Mesa Bike” face various different routes.
Divinus Bike Marathon – Monteforte d’Alpone
The Divinus Bike Marathon is a mountain bike race subdivided into “Marathon” and “Classic” categories. It was founded in 2003 by the “ASD Hellas Monteforte Ciclo Bike”, based in Monteforte d’Alpone, in the urban area of Verona. In relation to the number of participants, the Divinus Bike Marathon ranks among the first five cycling competitions in Italy. The marathon route is 70 km with a height of more than 2500 metres, while the “Classic” variant is half as long and covers a height of 1000 metres. Since the year of its foundation, the cycle marathon has been held annually – with the only exception of 2013 as a consequence of the overflow of the Alpone river.
Soave Bike Marathon – Cycle Marathon of the Wine Town – Verona
The Soave Bike Marathon, founded in the early 2000s, is held at the end of May and leads through the area’s vineyards. Soave is located in the east of the province of Verona and is 20 km from the provincial capital Verona. The area is full of vineyards and here one of the most famous wines in Italy is grown. The Soave Bike Marathon comprises two relatively short routes with a great difference in height. The first, “Short” route is 30 km with a height of 800 metres, the second, “Classic” is no longer than 50 km but with slopes and descents covering a height of 1400 metres. The event is organised by the “ASD Gruppo Ciclisti Soave Del Bosco” association.
Baldo Bike Race – Rivoli Veronese
In the month of July, the Baldo Bike Race is also held in the province of Verona. This competition features a hiking path on varying routes through the slopes of Monte Baldo. The route is usually 50 km, with a height of 1200 metres. The slopes on Monte Baldo are matched by breathtaking descents during a race that excites because of its beautiful surroundings. Like the Bardolino Bike Race and the La Mesa Bike Race, this event is also organised by the “ASD Baldo Bike Giomas” association.
Lessinia Legend Mountain Bike Race – Bosco Chiesanuova
In Bosco Chiesanuova, at the heart of the Lessinia region, the “Lessinia Legend”, one of the most important mountain bike races of the region, is held and also features various side events at the same time. Among these is the “Lessina Legend Expo”, open a day before and during the race event, which is usually held in mid-May or at the end of July. The Lessinia Legend Race offers two routes, the “Classic” and the “Extreme”, both starting and ending in Bosco Chiesanuova. During the Classic route, the tour runs along wide forest tracks and is technically not too difficult. The route is about 40 km and boasts a difference in height of 2000 metres. The Extreme route is not much more difficult. It is 120 km long with a height of more than 45000 metres. Both routes have one indisputable advantage, they both lead through a landscape of breathtaking beauty.
Punta Veleno Extreme Race – Brenzone
The characteristic of the Punta Veleno Extreme Race, normally held in the month of September, is the timed hill climb across the Punta Veleno slope. From Castelletto di Brenzone, participants reach the locality of Prada Alto in less than 8 km having faced a vertical rise of slightly more than 1000 metres. The route of the Punta Veleno Extreme Race is part of the “Giro del Trentino” stage race and is considered to be one of the most difficult slopes of all by many cyclists. The slope is usually 12,7 % with stretches of more than 20 % and the road is completely tarmacked.
D’Annunzio Bike Marathon – Gardone Riviera
The “ASD GS Odolese Mtb Conca D’Oro” association is responsible for the organisation of this event held in Gardone Rivera on the western shore of Lake Garda. The D’Annunzio Bike Marathon is held at the same time as the “D’Annunzio Run” fell running race. The cycle race has been held since 2010 in October. The route of the D’Annunzio Bike Race is 30 km long and has a height of 1500 metres. The road surface is asphalt, cobbled pavement and crushed stone. It starts on the lakeside in Gardone Riviera, then leads through the hills of the towns in the hinterland of Lake Garda.