Miami hosted the final event of the 2011 Gran Fondo Colnago series, with the sensational participation of world-class professional champions joining 1400 participants from 46 countries for a great ride around the Magic City.
Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich was the special guest for the event, joined by former Giro d'Italia winners Gilberto Simoni and Stefano Garzelli. McLaren-Mercedes Formula 1 driver Jenson Button also showcased his love for cycling riding an aggressive 55-mile course.
The Gran Fondo Colnago Miami concluded the 2011 series, after San Diego, Los Angeles/Beverly Hills and Philadelphia. Iconic manufacturer Colnago was the title sponsor of all the events.
"The USA Gran Fondo events are a great way for us to reach out to our clients in North America," Alessandro Colnago said after riding with Ullrich and Button.
Ullrich has recently rediscovered his love for cycling by riding Gran Fondo events this year, while Jenson Button summed up the feelings of everyone who finished the Gran Fondo Colnago Miami: "I had a lot of fun. See you at the next Gran Fondo."
Satisfaction from the organizing committee: "The year ends with the fourth Gran Fondo USA we planned, and Miami, like San Diego, Los Angeles/Beverly Hills and Philadelphia, has proven to be welcoming and warm, emotional not only for the participants but also for ourselves, the organization" said Matteo Gerevini, the founder of this format which blends the cycling Made in Italy with the American desire for quality events. "In 2012, we'll add two other destinations in Nevada and Colorado" - added Gerevini – bringing to six events our U.S. series."
Commissioner Ralph Cabrera (City of Coral Gables) and Mayor Tomas Regalado (City of Miami) attended the event, bringing a personal salute to the riders, underlining the strong cycling vocation of the entire area.
Partial proceeds of Gran Fondo Colnago Miami benefit St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.