Second Gran Fondo Cycling Event Set for Sept. 9

1,400 riders have already signed up for charity fundraiser.

In less than two weeks, about 1,500 cycling enthusiasts are expected to ride from Morristown, bound for the twisted, turning, hilly roads of Morris County and beyond.

The sophomore Gran Fondo NJ is scheduled for Sept. 9. Organized by and sponsored by Jamis Bicycles, the now-annual event will offer routes of 18, 44, 64 an 107 miles, with proceeds benefiting three area organizations—Grow it Green Morristown, and .

Marty Epstein, owner of the Speedwell Avenue bike shop since 1978, said $5,000 was donated to each of the organizations last year. Everyone worked so well with each other, he decided to promote the same organizations for the event's second turn.

"All the charities worked so hard last year with us to make the event a success that I wanted to support them again this year," he said. "Our event is run with sustainability as the guiding principle and these charities fulfill the equity portion of our mission along with supporting the environment and the local economy."

New this year is the 18-mile Breve Fondo. It was the ride's 64-mile Medio Fondo, however, that recently received honors from one of bicycling's most recognized media. “We were extremely thrilled this year to have Bicycling Magazine recognize our 64-mile Medio Fondo route as ‘The Best Ride in New Jersey’ and included in their prestigious list of The 50 Best Rides in
America,” Epstein said. “It aligns perfectly with one of our underlying
objectives to showcase the beauty of The Garden State to the world.”

The weekend celebration begins Saturday with "The Mayor's Kid Fondo," a free event for children 5 through 13 where kids will ride alongside members of the Jamis/Sutter Home cycling team.

"One of the key things setting Gran Fondo NJ apart from other Gran Fondos is our focus on including riders of all ability levels,” said Bill Ruddick, executive director of Gran Fondo NJ. He noted the addition of the Breve Fondo, as well as a timed hill climb for the 44-mile Piccolo Fondo.

Last year, by a couple weeks. Still, . Epstein said 1,400 already have signed up this year, with about 12 days before the event.

"Gran Fondo NJ in its inaugural year was so widely raved about after the ride that it was an easy decision to do it again," Epstein said.

For more information about .

holly spirits August 28, 2012 at 11:40 PM
Is this the Mayor's Gran Fondo event or the less important one?
Rebecca P. Feldman August 29, 2012 at 10:50 AM
The scenery of the Gran Fondo NJ is well worth traveling for, and it will be great to have so many riders who are seeing Morris and Somerset counties' beauty for the first time. The hills on the longer rides definitely will be remembered, too!
Motown Resident August 30, 2012 at 12:16 PM
The Mayor is a rain-maker Holly, by placing his name to these events, sponsors come out of the woodwork. He has really grown the "Mayor's Jazz Festival" largely through donations from those businesses in town and those seeking to do business in town. Plus, adding the Mayor's name to the Gran Fondo will ensure it's success moving forward.


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