We caught up Rueben Kline, Race Director of the Golden Gran Fondo held August 28th. It starts in downtown Golden and takes riders on historic roads and some that many may not have experienced like Gap road between Golden Gate Canyon and Coal Creek Canyon. These routes are challenging but well supported. To learn more and sign up, go here: https://www.granfondonationalseries.com/gran-fondo-golden
The Golden Gran Fondo is part of a national series where riders can earn points all over the country, including partner events like the Bob Cook Memorial Hill Climb and Triple Bypass
How many years has this fondo been around?
-First year was 2013
Is there anyone doing the entire national series?
-Yes we one person who is on track to do all this year. Historically only 3 people have completed the entire series in the same year
I noticed the national championship was in July, does the Golden Gran Fondo count for next year?
-Yes, Golden is a qualifying event for the 2022 USA Cycling Gran Fondo National Championships
What is the steepest climb? Backside of White Ranch?
-Technically, I believe it is on Mountain Base Road. But the dirt section on Drew Hill pretty much takes it
Can someone who signs up for the 90 bail part-way through and do 63?
-Yes, they can cut off at mile 38 after the climb up Mountain Base Rd
Talk about the aid stations and what folks can expect?
-Fully stocked with Hammer Nutrition HEED & Gels as well as Bonk Breaker bars. Fruit soda, chips, and other snack items
Talk about traffic control, particularly on Golden Gate and Coal Creek Canyons?
– Supported by CSP moto patrol, riders can ride Golden Gate and Cole Creek with confidence that they are safe and supported
For those that haven’t ridden Gap road, is that paved or hard pack dirt or both? (I’ve never ridden and hard to tell on map)
-Hard pack it’s Mag’ed out (isn’t that how they say it), and the views are breathtaking perhaps the best views on the route.
What are the highlights in your minds about this ride in general?
-Start under the Welcome to Golden Arch and Finishing into the beer garden in the heart of Golden’s Parfet Park. The Golden Gran Fondo offer a true loop experience and completing this challenging an beautiful route is a badge riders can wear with pride
Besides the history of Lookout (303 article on history HERE) any other history along the route to share?
-Beginning in downtown Golden, the start of the event traces the route of the inaugural USA Pro Cycling Challenge. The course then continues it’s tracing of historical bicycle racing with a long climb towards the continental divide and some of the same roads used in the Coors Classic and featured in the movie American Flyers (Kevin Costner’s classic cycling film that was set in Golden).
Where does this Fondo stack up in terms of difficulty with the others?
-All Series events are challenging and depending on how a rider feels on event it’s likely the hardest rider they will take. We set out to create a route that was a true accomplishment where having top support is central to the goal, Golden Gran Fondo is an event where riders will push their limits. We simply don’t see the use in holding easy events that riders can go do on their own on any old Sunday.