An easy ride greeted everyone on day four of Santa Cruz Stone King Rally Vol.1. But we all know this is not your ordinary bicycle race; easy is only relative. Riders started the stages in Italy and finished the day in France.
More than a few revived themselves with a gelato and an espresso before making the day’s opening special stage; others used the trail itself to slap themselves awake. Parts of the day included severe exposure – an excellent way to double-check the morning’s wake-up had done the job.
Beyond the halfway mark, the race waved goodbye to the Cottian Alps and welcomed the Maritime Alps proper. Riders eyeballed the finish line as they made their way into the second half of the day, with a liaison section skirting around more nineteenth-century Italian fortresses.
The day typified the fruits of much hard work in the weeks, months and years leading up to the Stone King Rally. A lot of scouting, organising and graft has brought many lost or half- forgotten trails back to life for everyone to enjoy on two wheels.