As the old saying goes, “When in Rome, build in a day.” I’m pretty sure that’s the saying. I’m not sure what it means, mind you, but the organizers of the 24 Hours of Rome mountain bike race might have some idea. They’re holding a 24 hour relay in the Parco degli Acquedotti, or as we say in Americaish, “Aqueducts Park.”
Why is it called Aqueducts Park? I know that one: it’s because of all the aqueducts.
What’s an aqueduct? Well, they’re the evil twins of normal bridges. A normal bridge is dry land over water, whereas an aqueduct is a bridge for transporting water over dry land. Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor was it built near enough to water, so they had to build aqueducts to keep their fountains flowing.
The race is a 24 hour relay, with categories for solo riders up to teams of twelve people. From what I can gather, the course is pretty short (7.4km or around 4.5mi) and pretty flat (only 50m or 164ft of elevation change). As you can see in the photo above, two riders are on rigid forks. But having done a few 24 hour races myself, I can tell you that riding when your body wants you to sleep is grueling regardless of how technical things are.
The 24 Hours of Rome looks like a lot of fun to me. Who wants to fly me to Rome?