Monday, August 10, 2009

Part II: Andy Hampsten and the Gavia (and a few other Passes)

We continue with Part II of Buzz Yancich's story of riding with Andy Hampsten.

Andy Hampsten and the Gavia (and a few other Passes), Part II


The remainder of our trip was based out of picturesque setting of Alleghe and featured the jagged peaks and spires of the Dolomites – a terrain that can’t be found anywhere else in the world.

The view from our hotel in Alleghe.

Our rides featured the Marmolada, Passo Duran, Passo di Campolongo, Passo di Costalunga, Rolle, Gardegna, Campolungo, and Sella. We had good weather with only a couple of damp days.

Dolomites - spectacular.

There is not a lot of handholding by Hampsten. He sets the stage for you, so to speak, and then steps back to allow you to discover the experience for yourself. It is obviously a formula that works as the majority of the riders on the trip were returning clients.

Stopping for photos is required!

Hampsten moves around the group quite a bit, a daunting task considering on climbs of these lengths it is only natural that the group strings out as everyone rides at their own pace. As mentioned earlier, Hampsten is still in remarkably lean and muscular. I remember following him up the Marmolada and seeing the outline of his spine and his back muscles clearly through his wool jersey.

It didn’t take long to realize that like all great athletes he has a deep inner focus and willingness to commit himself 100% to the task at hand. It was a real treat to be able to ride with him.

Typical view along the way – all day long.

Every turn holds a surprise.

To be continued............
Trips to Italy with Andy Hampsten are found at:
Stories, including cycling trip stories, for the Italian Cycling Journal welcome; contact veronaman@gmail.

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