The Nove Colli (nine hills) is widely regarded as the first ever sportive. The original event took place in 1970 organised by the local cycling club who still to this day run the sportive. It is now a massive operation with 13,000 riders coming from all over the world, live TV coverage in Italy and completely closed roads over a 200km route.
This is one of the largest gatherings of cyclists in Europe and there is a large expo in Cesenatico over the weekend with most brands there with their newest toys. The ride itself has a great atmosphere with locals lining the route and riders enjoying the beautiful countryside and completely closed roads.
Ride with 13,000 other mostly Italian riders. Enjoy the super quick first 30km and then make friends on the climbs all on closed roads.
Emilia Romagna is one of cycling's best kept secrets. Great coastal roads, some great climbs, sleepy hilltop towns and a culture that respects cyclists makes this a classic cycling destination.
The Lonely Planet recently awarded the region their number one destination in Europe award and cited their amazing food as a key reason. This is the foody capital of Italy which pretty much makes it the foody capital of the world. The perfect place to carb load!
The most popular sportive in Italy, all 13,000 entries get snapped up in minutes. Riders at the front of the race take it very seriously with the event screening live on TV. Further back, Italians and riders from all over the world tackle the 9 hills in a great atmosphere.
Arrival day. Collection is from Bologna Airport at 12.30pm. Please arrange a flight to arrive at least 30 mins before this. We set up bikes and go for a short coffee spin in the afternoon.
Warm up ride one: after a delicious breakfast we head out to the hills for an easy 80km spin. We have a buffet waiting for us back at the hotel. Relax or check out the Marco Pantani museum in the afternoon before dinner.
Warm up ride two: a short 50km spin by the coast. Check out the race village in the afternoon before getting an early night.
Granfondo day! A very early breakfast from 4.30am, pens open at 6am for a 7am start.
Departure day. We leave the hotel at 8am to arrive back in Bologna at 10am. Please arrange a flight to leave a minimum of 2 hours after this.
- Great food
- Comfy rooms
- Beachside location
Our pick for the best hotel in Cesenatico. The Lungomare is right on the beach with great cycling facilities. The food is fantastic and the staff work hard to make sure you have a great stay.
We have a range of Pinarello bikes available for the Nove Colli including Dogma F10
Nove Colli is a sportive in 3 stages whether you are riding the 130km route or the full 200km. The first and last 30km are quick, very quick. Which just leaves either 70km or 140km depending on your route choice to get over the hills of the Emilia Romagna countryside.
This sportive is organised impeccably with closed roads, well marked climbs and feed stations stocked with energy food and local specialties. The sportive starts promptly at 6am with pens filling up from 5am. You will be given a pen colour instructing where to start - these are well sign posted in town. Straight from the gun the pace is quick as the route follows wide, flat roads. Hold on to a group and see those kilometress fly by (prepare to ride at a good 10km/h faster than your normal pace). From here the climbs start - 9 hills for the long route and 4 hills for the medium. These are mostly 5-7km and mostly steady. The most famous climb on the route is Barbotto which ramps up and up until hitting nearly 20% near the top. This is the final climb for the medium route.
On both routes, the final 30km is largely downhill giving you time to recover before a final quick 12km flat blast. After a final left turn in Cesenatico there is a long sprint finish to the line where crowds of locals will cheer you to the end.
Choose the Route
Ride Distance: 200
Elevation gain: 3840
Ride Distance: 130
Elevation gain: 1871
The nearest airport is Bologna which is just over one hour away. Transfers are available.
Race entries can be collected at the Stadio Comunale in Cesenatico from the Wednesday of the event. You will need your medical certificate, ID & Race Pack form that you need to print out from the Nove Colli website.
The grids open at 6am for a 7am start in Cesenatico. Grids of 2,000 riders are all over town with instruction of where to go given in your race pack. The finish is in central Cesenatico adjacent to the beach,
Choose between the Hotel David & Lungomare. Want to stay for more than 4 nights? Get in touch.
All Packages Include:
4 Nights: David Hotel for 1 person
4 Nights: David Hotel for 2 people
4 Nights: Hotel Lungomare for 2 people