The second annual Gran Fondo Hincapie-Chattanooga brought hundreds of cyclists to the mountain roads. Though the weather wasn’t necessarily on our side, the thunderstorms made for a memorable ride. And afterward, the hot paella made the ride even more worth it.
Sure, the Gran Fondo Hincapie-Chattanooga experience is about the ride, but there’s also so much more to enjoy. The weekend began early Friday morning when Hincapie ambassadors visited the Chattanooga Area Food Bank (the event’s beneficiary charity) to volunteer their time packing food for the community. Back at the Bessie Smith Cultural Center, Hincapie Sportswear hosted Packet Pick-Up and the Expo, and Friday evening guests enjoyed culinary creations at the Tower Community Bank Celebrity Chef Dinner located at the Tennessee Aquarium.
There were blue skies at the start, but little did we know Mother Nature had another plan in store for us as the miles stretched on. Riders for the 15-mile, 50-mile, or 80-mile routes lined up behind cycling celebrities George Hincapie, Bobby Julich, and members of the Hincapie Cycling Society, while Mariachi Sol de Dalton kicked off the fun.
Riders crossed the finish line soaking wet with smiles across their faces. Then they, along with family and friends, celebrated at the Family Festival out on the lawn of the Bessie Smith Cultural Center. Free barbecue and paella (courtesy of Bovinoche) warmed fingers and toes. Riders also enjoyed free drinks, including George’s Draft, of course.
Enjoy some highlights from the weekend. Want to add your own? Post your photos using #granfondohincapie.
There’s still more for our 2019 riders. Get your free images from Gran Fondo Hincapie, watch the video recap or sign up for another ride.