Mallorca 312 sportive
There can be few better places to ride your bike than Majorca, so a sportive on the island sounded like a great idea to me. Not so great was the idea of riding 312km all the way round it. Thankfully there's a shorter option of 167km that included all the climbing; the fun bit that you don't get to do in the UK.
With all 700 participants, including several Swiss handcyclists, starting together those opting for the short route also get to enjoy the closed roads for the first 45 minutes. That section took you from the start in Alcudia all the way round Polenca bay and to the bottom of the Lluc climb. Although the roads on the (seemingly neverending) climb are officially open, there are so few cars around at that time of day that it was a long time until we saw any traffic.
Although the 167 route is only half the distance, it does take in the majority of the hard roads all the way down the mountainous spine of the island to Valldemossa where the routes split. Thankfully the roads from there are mainly flat (they also pass a few nice cafes, ahem), so even tired legs will find their way home, especially with the feed stations. Once you've finished there's one more treat. The pasta party that evening gives you free reign of the Iberostar's extensive restaurant.
Website: Mallorca 312
Total ascent: 2,196m
Terrain: Mountainous first half, mercifully flat second half
Best: Majorcan rides, always a pleasure to ride
Worst: Thikning; 'hmmm, maybe I should have done the longer one after all.'
331 finished 312km
302 finished 167km
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Cycling in the Balearics is something everyone should experience. The Tour of the Lighthouses on Menorca is a nice one to close your season.