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Ride25 Pioneers Leg 5<br> <h3>Rome to Bari 2016</h3>

Ride25 Pioneers Leg 5

Rome to Bari 2016


Coastline, monuments, vineyards, olive groves, hilltop towns but mostly rolling hills and outstanding views for 4 days.


Close to the Vatican 7am Thursday 26th May 2016 – Pre-start drinks with the ambassador on Wednesday 25th May 2016.


The Seafront in Bari 6pm Sunday 29th May 2016

Days’ Cycling:



400 miles

Total climbing:

33,500 ft climbing (according to Strava!!)

Max capacity:

100 people (we expect it to sell out with mainly pioneers – please book asap) 

You MUST complete the booking process to secure your place – an email to John or Rob saying you’re coming doesn’t secure your place!  (NO EXCEPTIONS!!) ;o)

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Pre- Start – 7.30pm 25th May 2016

The British Ambassador to Italy, Christopher Prentice is hosting a Pioneers’ drinks reception for cyclists and supporters at the Villa Wolkonsky from 7.30pm on May 25th. It will be a great opportunity to see everyone again before the cycling begins the next morning.

Day 1 – 26th May – Rome to Gaeta 98 Miles & 7,995 ft total ascent

An amazing day with the most varied scenery & cycling imaginable in one day. Meet next to Castel Sant’ Angelo, on the river, 500 metres in front of the Vatican at 7am for Registration with an 8am departure.

Cycle along the Tiber River briefly until we head past the Roman Forum and Colosseum until we hit the Appian Way – the very first Roman Road and cycle past the Catacombs. Road bikes weren’t a feature of Roman life so this is a real Ride25 adventure – small sections of the Appian Way (in the first mile) have the original large cobbles and you will need to get off your bike to pass. After the Appian Way we start our first climb of the trip through the Castello Romani Park and through the hilltop town of Marino. We then travel through quiet farmland & vineyards before climbing to 1,100 ft and then dropping down to the coast. The last section is along the coast road to Gaeta. The hotel is close to a decent beach and has a swimming pool. Dinner is on the beach.


Full route including elevation profile


Day 2 – 27th May – Gaeta to Avellino– 100 miles, 7,009 ft total ascent

We leave Gaeta and follow the coastline for the first 20 miles before heading east, avoiding the congestion & general filth around greater Naples! Another day of outstanding views cycling through the Taburno Camposauro National Park in the morning. Lunch is on a hillside at a family run Agristourismo. The afternoon involves a long steady climb with an ice cream stop in the town of Montesarchio. We finish climbing in the Partenio regional park before our descent into Avellino – the home of Tony Sopprano’s father! Home for the night is a quirky 4 star hotel.

Full route including elevation profile

Day 3 – 28th May – Avellino Potenza – 95 miles, 11,900 ft total ascent

Day 3 is a day to remember and probably the best cycling of all 5 legs so far. As soon as we leave Avellino we start cycling on incredibly quiet roads that continue all day with truly outstanding rural views for the whole day. This is the biggest day of climbing of all the trips so far but is also the most stunning and incredibly peaceful. Lunch is at a locally owned restaurant in the hills – in fact the only restaurant for miles! The afternoon continues with more empty roads, and outstanding views until we reach Potenza.

Full route including elevation profile

Day 4 – 29th May – Potenza to Bari – 104 miles, 6,500 ft total ascent

Day 4 continues with more beautiful, quiet, undulating roads as we head east towards the coast. The whole area is sparsely populated with far reaching views galore. Lunch is at another agristourismo restaurant in the hills with great views. We then finish with a relatively gentle afternoon before cycling along the coastline into Bari for a celebration dinner in a Square in the old town by the harbour.

Full route including elevation profile


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Timing of the trip

We have moved the trip into May this year so that it is likely to be a little cooler than late June. The other advantage is that the Monday after the finish is a Bank Holiday and also is the start of half term for most UK schools. Puglia is a great holiday destination in May – why not bring the family to the finish and have in holiday in Puglia post event? Everyone is welcome to the dinner on the last night. We need to slowly start encouraging the next generation!


How does the trip compare to previous legs?

Just as in previous years it is a challenge that you will need to train for to maximise your enjoyment. Overall we cover 100 miles per full day – exactly the same as in Leg 4. In terms of climbing we cover an average of 8,023 ft of climbing per day versus 8,375 ft average on the three hilly days of Leg 4. Day 3 of leg 5 is the area to focus your training motivation. The peak elevation is 3,722 ft towards the end of day three.

All ascents have been measured using Strava – remember Strava tends to exaggerate the amount of climbing versus other sources.  Read this article Strava Inaccurate Data if you are really keen to understand it – also the bad news is the climbing you record on the Strava phone app is also not accurate – the Garmins are a lot more accurate – especially the Edge 1000.


How will I navigate?

As in Leg 4 we encourage everyone to either have a Garmin (or similar GPS navigation device) or install the Strava App & routes onto your phones.  Garmin has launched various new models in the last 12 months, many of which include navigation at far lower price points.  See reviews here ( – a great excuse for a new cycling gadget!

As always, we do not follow the quickest routes each day – the routes are planned to minimise traffic & busy roads and maximise the scenery & significant places.

If using various versions of Garmin to prevent navigation problems please

  • Follow the route as a “Course”
  • Ensure that “Autocorrect” is turned off in your settings for each course
  • Do not “navigate to start” when prompted at the start of a ride – both will cause you problems with navigation.

Ride25 will provide an amazing cloth micro-fibre map that will get you out of trouble if you are lost with no working devices but to navigate effectively you’ll need to use a Garmin or Strava on your phone. 


What else will happen on Leg 5? 

We want to ensure that we keep the camaraderie and ensure that people see plenty of each other throughout the trips. As in Leg 4 we will do the following:

  • Regular designated stops – We will have designated stops mid morning and mid afternoon together with a lunch stop – no pressure to stop unless you want to but we have endeavoured to find the best places on the route to stop for coffee, cake & ice creams as well as a good lunch.
  • Different start times – We will have two different start times each day depending on your speed – broadly the slowest will start 60 mins before the fastest. You can of course leave when you want to but by doing this we are far more likely to see more of each other.
  • More accessible support vehicles – We will endeavour to make support vehicles more accessible throughout the days so that you can always call to be picked up if you’re not enjoying yourself.
  • Designated Finishes – not always possible but we will aim to have a more formal finish each day – with a bar where possible.
  • Awards –for being a “real” Ride25 Pioneer
  • Dinners – these will all be at the same sitting this year, at or close to the main hotels.
  • Hotels – we are all in the same hotels for two nights – circa 20 people will be in a second hotel for the middle two nights


What are the highlights of Leg 5?

  • Pre start “Ambassador’s Reception” in the grounds of the official residence – known as the most impressive garden in Italy.
  • Starting close to the Vatican
  • Cycling along the Appian Way to the outskirts of Rome
  • Undulating countryside to the coast
  • The wild and peaceful countryside of central and eastern Italy
  • Outstanding views for the vast majority of the trip


Do I need to train?

YES, 400 miles cycling is a significant challenge for anyone but as in previous years it is achievable. We do recommend you follow a training schedule, lots of advice HERE. As in previous years you can always call the support team if you need picked up at any point. This year we will have more seats available in the support cars so that it is easier to get picked up if required.

Overall the trip is similar to Leg 4 but day 3 is arguably harder than the 3rd day of last year. Use the trip as an excuse to get fitter!

You will enjoy the cycling, company, scenery, food and wine a lot more if you are a bit fitter than last year!

How do I get to Rome?

At the latest, you’ll need to arrive in Rome in the afternoon of Wednesday the 25th May to make sure you make it to the pre-start reception. There are multiple direct flights to Rome on the 25th May. We recommend Ride25 sponsor Skyscanner to source flights!


Where do I stay in Rome?

The package does not include accommodation in Rome on the 25th May. We recommend you stay close to the Castel Sant’ Angelo / The Vatican so that you can get to the start easily with bikes & bike boxes etc. Suggested hotels close by:

Hotel Columbus –

Palazzo Cardinal Cesi –

Hotel La Rovere –

NH Hotels –


The Start

Castel Sant’ Angelo, on the river, 500 metres in front of the Vatican. The Pope is yet to confirm his reappearance to bless the start.


How do I get from the Airport to central Rome with my bike box?

There are regular trains from Rome Fiumicino airport to Rome Termini Station. The Vatican is 3.5 miles from Termini Station and 18 miles from Fiumicino Airport.

Alternatively take a taxi straight from the Airport – it might be sensible to pre-book a large mini-van style taxi and get together with 2-3 other pioneers per booking.

How do I get home from Bari?

There are only 2 flights to the UK from Bari on Monday 30th June (British Airways, Ryanair). Ryanair also has a late flight on Sunday 29th June. Easyjet also has a flight that leaves on Tuesday 31st. We recommend you book your flights early. The cheapest way is to get an indirect flight with a total journey time of circa 4 hours – numerous options available on Skyscanner.


What are we raising money for?

As in previous years all participants shall pay all their own costs and all money raised shall go straight to 1moreChild.

What is 1moreChild?

1moreChild was set-up by Harry & Hen Ferdinando in 2008 to help enable street children in Jinja, Uganda to go to school and prosper. Ride25 raises money for 1moreChild for the following key reasons:

A small amount of money goes along way – as little as £15 per month can transform a child’s life. 100% of all money donated to 1moreChild goes to tackle the problem.  There are no western overheads, admin costs or wastage. In addition Harry & Hen pay all their own costs. The money raised from the cycle will make an enormous difference to 1moreChild and enable them to take many more children out of the slum.

For more information about 1moreChild please visit

1moreChild provide school fees, 3 meals a day, school uniforms, school supplies, shoes, clothes, medical care, tutoring, mentoring, a football club and various other activities.


What impact has the money raised by the Pioneers had?

The Pioneers cycle trip is the most significant fundraising initiative for the charity with circa 70% of their overall funding coming from this trip.

What is the cost – and what’s included?

Cost: £620 per person with a single supplement of £175. There are a limited number of single rooms. As in all previous Pioneer trips this is a not for profit trip – i.e. the cost is a sum of the direct costs of running the trip only. This includes:

  • Pre-start Drinks reception at Villa Wolkonsky
  • 4 x nights accommodation in Gaeta, Avellino, Potenza & Bari. Almost all twin rooms in 4*+ hotels.
  • 4 x breakfast
  • 4 x lunch
  • 4 x dinner including celebration dinner
  • 5 x manned support vehicles including 2 x bike mechanics & first aiders
  • Transportation of bags each day to the finish
  • Transportation of bike boxes from Milan to Rome
  • Water, fruit and emergency supplies in the vehicles
  • 4 x personalised cycling shirts including the badges achieved
  • GPS files of the routes & “get out of trouble” maps

Optional extras:

  • Single room
  • Ride25 Pioneers Gilet

What’s not included?

  • Flights to Rome OR back from Bari
  • Transfer to and from airports
  • Coffee/cake at mid-morning and mid-afternoon stops
  • Hotel in Rome Pre start
  • A Bike!!
  • A bike box
  • Personal insurance


Which hotels are we staying in?

The nature of the Ride25 adventure means that the routes and accommodation is dictated to by what the inventory of hotels looks like along our journey. The overall standard is higher than on Leg 4 but there are a couple of hotels (on the 2nd and 3rd nights) that are of a slightly lower standard. The overflow hotel on night 2 is too far to walk to dinner so taxis will be arranged!


Night 1 Gaeta 4* Hotel with pool close to he beach


Night 2 Avellino 4* quirky hotel with pool at the edge of town.

Overflow hotel (taxi’s will be arranged to get to dinner)


Night 3 Potenza 4* hotel in the centre of town.

Overflow Hotel close by –


Night 4 Bari – 5* Hotel on the seafront 


How to book a place?

Initial Payment: £150 payable to confirm place that will be donated to 1moreChild in the event that you pull out. Alternatively make the full payment of £620 (twin) or £795 (single) now to avoid further admin!  If you select to get a single room you will be charged for the single supplement upfront, to save admin and hassle.

Balancing payment due in Feb 2016.


What about Ride25 Pioneer Virgins?


Until the 15th November only cyclists that have completed a Pioneer event previously can book onto the trip, please don’t book anyone else before this date as we will reject them until all Pioneers have had the chance to book on.  We only have 100 spaces this year.

After the 15th November you can invite your friends but we will ask them to make a commitment to fundraising for 1moreChild or friends who have companies that wish to be a corporate sponsor.  We have also held back a few places for new corporate sponsors.


What are the opportunities for sponsorship?


We have put together a number of packages but are also open to offers from anyone for anything.

Cyclists pay for the costs of the shirts, banners etc so all the money given in sponsorship goes directly to 1moreChild. The more you sponsor the larger exposure your logo will get.

Harry Ferdinando, the founder of 1moreChild is on the leg again this year so you will have plenty of opportunity to hear more about the great things the money you are raising achieves.

A number of places on the ride have been saved for Sponsors even if they are not Pioneers.


What do I need to bring?

  • Chamois Cream – lots
  • Helmet
  • Sunglasses / clear lenses for glasses
  • Large saddle bag with –  2 x spare inner tubes, puncture repair kit and tyre leavers
  • Cycle pump or gas canisters
  • 2 x large water bottles for hydration drinks and water
  • Your favourite energy gels or bars
  • Sun cream
  • Top bar bag for phone, wallet and energy stuff
  • Phone mount if you are using Strava as a navigation tool
  • Portable battery charger for mobile
  • Garmin (or similar GPS navigation device) or Strava App for phone
  • Bright lights (Front & Rear) & High Viz vest – there are 3 tunnels on the coast road on the first day – these are unavoidable. Bright lights & a high viz vest are both important from a safety perspective but are also a legal requirement in Italy for travelling through tunnels.

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