How we did it

Cyclist - - Strade Bianche | Sportive -

TRAVEL

The eas­i­est air­port to get to is Pisa, which is ser­viced by most in­tercon­ti­nen­tal air­lines. Cy­clist flew from Gatwick for around £80 re­turn with­out bike, hold lug­gage or legroom. Bri­tish Air­ways is worth a look – prices are higher but in­clude 23kg of hold lug­gage that can com­prise a bike bag.

AC­COM­MO­DA­TION

We stayed at the Il Piccolo Castello, where some se­ri­ously plush rooms await guests from around £110pppn in­clud­ing break­fast. It’s a 20-minute drive to Siena, and a host of pro teams choose it as their base. It’s spa­cious, quiet and you’ll be able to queue up with Peter Sa­gan for cof­fee in the morn­ing.

THANKS

Gra­zie mille to Jon Heas­man at Vit­to­ria wheels and tyres, who or­gan­ised our trip, made sure ev­ery­thing ran smoothly and who didn’t rub it in when he beat Cy­clist by over two min­utes. Mind you, he was wear­ing a Giro Air At­tack hel­met, which is worth at least 10 ex­tra watts.

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