HAUTE ROUTE 2012: the pursuit of glory for BMC Team
Seven guys, seven days, seven stages, seven hundred and eighty kilometres and twenty-one thousand metres of elevation gain. Reading these numbers it seems to be the road to Hell. It does not. It is the Haute Route 2012, the second edition of the highest and toughest cyclosportive in the World, which took place from August 19th to 25th, from Geneva to Nice, through Megève, Courchevel, Alpe d'Huez, Risoul and Auron. More than 600 riders at the start, coming from 43 different countries, who have passed 19 legendary alpine cols, made famous by Tour de France passage. A challenging fatigue in which not only the legs, but especially the heart and the mind made the real difference. The breathtaking scenery, the audience, organization, and the desire to succeed have done the rest.
On the starting line, in front of everyone, there were, thanks to the fundamental support of BMC Switzerland, Andrea Marchionatti, Michel Chocol, Luigi Ferdusi, Paul Pellissier, Gianni Brandalese, Marco Scanziani and Paolo Maggia, coming from Biella. The team had a great performance, gaining good positions since the beginning, and closing the gap day by day until a 4th place in the team's classification, at only 4 minutes from the podium, and in the men GC a 2nd place for Chocol, who nothing could against his rival, the "Martian" Pouly.
This event did not only represent an agonistic competition: it's been a unique opportunity to meet a lot of people, among whom there was Christiàn Haettlich, who has completed the seven fractions, despite he was pedaling without a leg and an arm, proving an iron will. It was an opportunity to ride next to Emma Pooley, World champion and Olympic vice-champion in time trial. A chance then to deal with the young guys of Kenyan Team, who have the ambition to reach the Grand Boucle in a few years. At the end of such a great experience everyone was deeply moved, conscious of having completed something epic, sure to have given body and soul to achieve a target that may seem trivial to most, but for many it is a way to grow. The hugest satisfaction was with no doubt, passing through the villages, to hear the French crowd to shout: "Allez les Italiens".
Read the newsletter online: this way you can download entire audio interviews in high quality, the complete result documents with climbing time of all the 19 cols which have characterized this second edition. Moreover you can view the most significant pictures of the team. So do not hesitate to open the newsletter by clicking here.
Michel Chocol said:
«This competition for me has been a great examination in the darkness, since I had never done any stage race in my life, except for a Tour of Biellese Udace, that was 60 flat kilometres a day. Morover the air you breathe here is pretty contrasting from the granfondos I've got used to participate, in Italy... the approach is different, for sure there's a true bond of friendship, and the coalition towards a single goal, to finish every stage and the entire tour. The organization is different, I almost had the impression of being a pro-rider (logistics facilities, the start and the finish lines, massages, award celebrations). It's been beautiful as well racing with a team of friends, each one with his own hope, and together for a common target... There were definitely difficult times, where the fatigue and tension have put us to the test, but I think that basically everyone has learned something. As for the race I do not have much more to say, except that the podium of the first day was the final podium. The stages had the same type of elevation profile and thus there was a clear need to be good climbers. Peter has certainly prepared this competition with a specific training, already knowing from the past edition, how to better face the mountains, so we've been just like sidekicks. Definitely if I do it again, I'll change something in the preparation and in the approach to the event.».
Luigi Ferdusi said:
Seven unforgettable days! Seven people with the chance to participate in an incredible event, unique for different reasons: organization, facilities, friends, landscapes. Only when you get to Nice you can understand what Haute Route means. I felt like a pro-rider: it seemed to me to be at the Tour de France. Every day you are more and more tired but you have to bite the bullet and fight for the classifications both individual and team, this way you realize that basically it's more important the team classification than yours. In the group it was easy to breathe the pure sense of challenge, with the utmost respect, since all of us were there to struggle together. For sure it's been the chance to strengthen friendships. I think lots of people should visit this places in order to feel the respect for cyclists. The most beautiful memory I keep safe in my mind is the sentence that resonated more often: "W FreeBike BMC". Thank you everybody!
Andrea Marchionatti said:
«Haute Route... a cherished dream for months, an incredible feat for me, novice cyclist, who gets on saddle only after the last strip of snow has melted... An unforgettable experience that will accompany me for life. A huge effort, an immense satisfaction, a unique emotion... For those who are "amateurs" the decision to get involved in a challenge of seven days means recklessness and sacrifice, training after work in the evening, when maybe you desire to stay at home, not thinking about the climb, the repeated, the races... for this reason getting to Nice was even more exciting, better than I could expect. These have been 7 wonderful days, spent with amazing people, who helped me, who tolerated me, and who shared with me lots of feeling, nice and bad. Perhaps I will not experience this thing again in my life, and that's what makes it even bigger, even more unique. THANKS TO ALL!».
A couple of downloads are available: the first is the complete pack of result documents, and the second is the interview to Remì Duchemin, CEO at OC Sport, the organizing company (interview by Nicolò Canparo, recorded at Alpe d'Huez).
Scarica Haute Route 2012 - Classifications icona documento zip Scarica Interview to Remi Duchemin