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How to go completely bonkers... Zinzin de Turini!


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How to go completely bonkers... Zinzin de Turini!

Ivan Blanco


Pronunciation IPA(key): /zɛ̃zɛ̃/
Adjective zinzin (plural zinzins)

1 (colloquial) bonkers,  2 (Louisiana) buttocks

The origins are unknown to me, but it may have involved your usual spur of superpower feeling of a group of cyclists after some night out in the streets of Nice… but however it was, it is among us now and here to stay. What am I talking about? Well, the one and only Zinzin de Turini Challenge! Chaperoned by the Cafe du Cycliste, it includes everything crazy that normal people say about us cyclists and… goes even beyond that!

With the Col de Turini at the heart of this adventure, the basic lunacy of this challenge is:

Climb the 1604m massif with your bike, not once, not twice, but three times from each of its sides, picture it, Strava it or stamp it with Cafe du Cycliste’s specifically created route card; provided with any Audax clothing from their collection.

Quick aside, for another “stamping” adventure, head over to my Camino de Santiago cycling adventure by clicking here; a truly life-changing experience.

Go for it like SuperPierre!

So ready to be bonkers? Well, before you say yes yes yes, like my friend Edoardo when you ask him to go to a party, have a look at the elevation map and gain; source Strava:

Write here…

Write here…

How many of those 3 yeses have dropped? If one is still alive, then here’s the picture agenda Cafe du Cycliste had ready for its most daring and most cafe-addicted riders:

07:15 - RDV Café du Cycliste
07:30 - Departure from Café du Cycliste; towards Escarène
08:30 - 1st stamp at L’Escarène and up up up to Luceram, Baisse de la Cabanette, Piëra-Cava and… 1st time Col de Turini 1604m!
11:00 - 2nd stamp at Hotel Les Trois Vallées.
Then quick quick quick down to Sospel; easy mate!
12:00 - 3rd stamp in Sospel (Café next to the fountain)
Up up up to Moulinet, or to rhyme it with French pedaling, “allez mouliner!”
14:00 - FOOD time!!! Or as it ended up being, the best ever RAVITO! Thanks Café du Cycliste!
And 4th stamp at our usual Hotel Les Trois Vallées.
Quick quick quick down to Bollène Vesubie
5th stamp somewhere… angry bartender helped out but it seemed more like a menace, kinda good since it made us get back on our pedals and leave quick quick quick
14:30 – So up up up for a 3rd time in a row!
15:30 - 6th stamp - Even the guys at Hotel Les Trois Vallées kinda had enough ;) Thanks guys!
Quick hurray and hands in the air, but not too much, angry clouds with charged lightning bolts were ready to receive us in the most spectacular way, therefore, down to Escarene for the last treat.
16:30 - FOOD time in Escarène and what a glorious finish! Big big big Kudos to Ali, William and Matt to make this, one hell of a ride and yet another unique cycling experience! Gracias Amigos!

What next? Down to Nice and time for some rest… mmm… well, what would someone really bonkers do with 175km and 3850m already on their counter....? Of course, at least round up that elevation gain!

So it was for the Spanish loco of the group, with my usual Cimiez detour up to the Matisse Museum, the deal should be sealed… but not quite, so had to add a few more kilometers and in the end, as now a truly Cafe du Cycliste Zinzin, why not round up the k’s too?

So said (aka, thought; not talking alone yet ;)) so done!
Aspremont it was and with a last rain escape !

Final count of the day:
204.80km 9h04min & 4491m!
Time to dunk that beer!

So my dear fellow weekend riders, still feeling confident?

Then find out more about the Brevet here and about the fascinating Col de Turini here.

So long amigos, until next time:
helmet, espresso, climb & wave!


For the socialnatics, it’s down here