GRAN FONDO has always been bold: It was never about riding like the others, behaving to fit the group’s etiquette. We never wanted to conform or follow someone else’s rules; instead, we always wanted to do our own thing. Not what is expected of us, but what feels right, no matter what others may think.

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In that sense, we have always taken risks – sometimes rubbing people up the wrong way or not being liked. But we gladly accept that, because there is nothing worse than not daring to be yourself, and there is nothing more beautiful than doing what excites you.

This includes riding – the how, the when, and who we ride with – as well as doing things that inspire us, because time is finite and we’re not robots. One day, we might not feel like doing the same thing we did the previous day, so we won’t, and that’s totally fine.

That’s why this issue is brimming with adventures, surprises and the unknown!

The Highlights

  • One for all – The best all-road bike of 2023
  • Where will the gravel road end? – Gravel racing: between serious business and simple fun
  • Gravel Racers – With rally legend Walter Röhrl in the Porsche 911 Dakar and on the YT Szepter in gravel paradise
  • Searching for Paradise – Does paradise exist on earth or only on Instagram?
  • A peloton of opposites – Riding Mount Teide with Marcel Kittel, André Greipel, and self-doubt

The free, digital magazine is at the heart of what we do and undoubtedly the best way to experience our content. It comes with lots of interactive features, high-resolution images and videos, and a unique design. We’re sure that if you like our website, you will love the app. By the way, you’ll also find all the back issues of GRAN FONDO in the app – there’s definitely no shortage of reading material!

The all-road category is so broad that the various interpretations can be miles apart. However, the bikes all have one thing in common: the potential for road bike adventures far off from perfectly manicured asphalt. So, we grabbed ten of the hottest all-road bikes currently on the market and plunged head-first into an adventure. We came back with all the information you need to find the best all-road bike for you.

Gravel Earth Series, UCI Gravel World Series, Steamboat – The gravel racing scene is booming. What began as an anarchistic antithesis to established road racing is becoming more competitive, but also more conformist and targeted toward the masses. How much professionalisation can the sport tolerate before losing touch with its roots?

If anyone can fly over gravel roads, it’s Walter Röhrl. Teaming up with the rally legend, with the new YT Szepter and the new Porsche 911 Dakar, we spent a day spraying gravel in gravel paradise. Find out why Walter’s doctor certified him with a screw loose, why he drove Eddy Merckx to despair, and why he might have become a cycling world champion!

Back in the 1960s, Ibiza was a buzzing island reigned over by hippies, creatives and bohemians. It was a land of barefooted ease, where paradise and eternal happiness were well within reach. So, what about now? What has the hippie trail turned into? Does paradise exist or is it just an image we’re fed on Instagram? On a mixture of two and four wheels, we headed for Paradise Island!

Most roadies are a homogeneous crowd with clear (training) goals, performance categories, and preferences. But must it always be that way? We attempted our most diverse adventure yet, letting loose on Tenerife with German national coach André Greipel, sprint star Marcel Kittel, and a generous helping of self-doubt – with surprising results!

As you can see, we always find a way to combine our interests and do what makes us excited. I hope you’ll take some inspiration away from this issue and never be afraid to follow your instinct. Have fun reading!

Read the new issue now – for free!

Enough with the spoilers! These stories (and many more) are just a few swipes and taps away. If you’ve already installed our app, you can download and enjoy the latest issue immediately. If not, we strongly recommend installing it from the App Store (iPhone/iPad) or the Play Store (Android Smartphones & Tablets) and downloading issue #021 now. With that done, you can sit back and enjoy the latest stories and reviews (ideally with a well-tempered glass of wine or delicious coffee in hand)!

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Words & Photos: GRAN FONDO