ASD, a subsidiary of Asdeporte, producers of L’Etape by Tour de France and other globally-respected cycling events, announced that Clermont, Fla., is one of six American cities to host a Gran Fondo-style cycling event on Sept. 30, 2018. The event is one of the stops on the newly-created Fondo Cycling Circuit USA (FCCUSA), a collection of Gran Fondo cycling events offering 30, 50 and 75-mile ride options.
Gran Fondo is a long-distance bicycle ride that originated in Italy in 1970. The term roughly translates into “Big Ride.”
Gran Fondo events are recreational in nature but also include timed sections along the route. Steve Meckfessel, the FCCUSA national series director, said the new American circuit events will culminate with live music, food trucks and craft-beer festivals.
In addition to Clermont, the other five host cities include Akron, Ohio; Davidson, N.C.; Fredericksburg, Va.; Harrisburg, Pa. and Ridgeland, Miss.
“Our host cities are all highly-regarded cycling destinations within their respective regions,” Meckfessel said. “Each location is also a draw for entertainment, with historical, cultural and recreational options, and is located within a two-to-three-hour drive of major metropolitan areas. Clermont is ideal, and we’re excited to partner with the city.”
Clermont City Manager Darren Gray said the city was thrilled to be chosen as part of the new cycling circuit.
“We believe it’s the perfect event to launch Victory Pointe,” Gray said, referring to the new, passive park scheduled to open this summer. The passive park is designed to treat stormwater and also serve as a new event destination on Lake Minneola near downtown Clermont.
Lake County and Epic Cycles World have signed up to be sponsors of Clermont’s Gran Fondo. Meckfessel said triathlon legend Fred Sommer helped design the course, which will be announced soon.
Online registration is now open at FondoCyclingCircuitUSA.com. The first 100 cyclists to register for the FCCUSA event’s 50 and 75-mile routes receive a free Pearl Izumi Select Escape LTD cycling jersey. All participants receive a T-shirt, sling bag, finisher medal, water bottle, tickets to the food trucks and craft beer, plus other amenities.