Cyclocalendar heroes the Tour de France. In a series of articles we focus on the stage cities and the gran fondo's and sportives of thee region. Today: stage 12, which starts from Chauvigny.
Cycling around Chauvigny
You can't have it all. And that goes for the Tour de France as well, of course. Not every stage city or region is equally sparkling. Take today's starting point: Chauvigny. A town of 7000 inhabitants in central-western France. Chauvigny owes most of its fame to its medieval heritage. Situated on a rocky mountain range which connects the valleys of the Vienne and the Talbat, no less than five castles form a prominent ensemble, unique in Europe. Not much more can be said about the city.
The town may be situated on a hill, but the immediate surroundings of Chauvigny are as flat as the Netherlands. Who scans the area on Google Streetview, sees nothing but flat grasslands occasionally with a slight slope or a forest. No climbs here, just small hills. However, the further east you drive, the more serious it gets. That's because Chauvigny lies exactly at the foot of the Central Massif, as the map shows.
A little more towards the southwest, just below Poitiers we find the nearest gran fondo. The La Michel Grain is normally ridden in May; the longest route manages to collect 1226 meters of elevation in 164 km. The start and finish are in Nieuil-l'Espoir, about half an hour from Chauvigny. The edition of 2020 is, you guessed it, cancelled. Next year there will be another chance.
In tomorrow's edition: Châtel-GuyonRelated stories