The Eroica Strade Bianche (‘The Heroic Race of the Gravel Roads’) attracts cyclists from across Europe to the ancient city of Siena. The only requirement for this amateur race is that your bicycle must be of a certain vintage, and participants generally like to dress the part, donning traditional cycling gear for the 175km trek. With three weeks to go, I still had nothing suitable to wear and was getting desperate.
And so it was with delight and amazement that trawling the men’s clothes rails in my local Dorothy House Charity Shop, I came across a merino wool, long-sleeved, only-very-slightly-moth-eaten Molteni cycling top – for less than a fiver. It was hot, scratchy and uncomfortable, but I looked fabulous!