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Opting for two wheels instead of four

Edoardo Martelli took his bicycle for a business trip from Laives to Worms

Involving over 1,650 kilometers, 5 countries, quite a few changes in altitude and 81 hours of traveling – Edoardo Martelli of AD / Propulsion / Technologies, Concept and Design embarked on a business trip with a difference from Laives in June 2018.

Martelli is a passionate cyclist. “For my trips, all I need is two wheels, a small tent, a sleeping mat, some clothes, something to eat and drink – and that’s it. Nature provides the rest,” says Martelli. The opportunity for the trip arose from the need for yet another extended visit to the employees of the New Business Green Car team in Worms. The timing was ideal as it coincided with the extended hours of daylight in mid-June.

Martelli set off after work early one Friday afternoon. The first section of the route led from Laives through the Vinschgau Valley via the Reschen Pass to Austria, where he camped the first night after cycling for around 145 kilometers. On the Saturday and Sunday, the long-distance rider covered around 250 kilometers each day, which brought him across the Fern Pass and the Romantic Road as far as Füssen.

For my trips, all I need is two wheels, a small tent, a sleeping mat, some clothes, something to eat and drink – and that’s it. Nature provides the rest.

He then continued via Augsburg, Donauwörth and Nördlingen, bringing him to a point one hundred kilometers south of the town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber. There, Martelli left the Romantic Road, heading towards Schwäbisch Hall, where he spent the Sunday night in the middle of a heavy storm at a lake in Odheim. On the Monday morning, he covered the remaining 120 kilometers to Worms.

At the office in Worms, his colleagues greeted him as always with the facetious question as to whether he had traveled by bicycle. “This time, I said yes, which of course came as a surprise to everyone,” recounts Martelli. Naturally, the employees were astonished and extremely impressed. After a week of work in Worms, the question then arose whether to make the return trip on the train or by bicycle? “For me, the answer was clear. But it was also clear that I wanted to take a different route,” says Martelli.

He set off again on the Friday afternoon. On that day and the next day, he covered a total of 500 kilometers – in a southerly direction along the banks of the Rhine as far as Basel, where he turned east towards Lake Constance and from there to the Austrian mountains in the direction of the Silvretta Pass. He spent one night at its foot. The final stage was the longest and the most challenging: 300 kilometers over Silvretta Pass and Brenner Pass. “Shortly before midnight on the Sunday, I picked out my house in the glow of the headlights,” reports Martelli.

I can still see the cycle paths with their characteristic white stripes in my mind’s eye.

The images that remain with him after this adventure are those of endless and hilly fields in Germany, broad rivers that flow throughout Europe, of romantic villages, the majestic Alps with snow-capped peaks and emerald-green lakes, of nights spent in the tent and of brilliant sunrises. “However, I can still see the cycle paths with their characteristic white stripes on the asphalt, between green meadows or alleyways in my mind’s eye, as they accompanied me for many hours on the bicycle,” adds Martelli, a veteran of numerous extraordinary vacation journeys. Freedom, adventure, sporting endeavor, inquisitiveness and a passion for pushing his personal limits appear to be in his blood.

Would he embark on another such business trip? “Why not? But would choose yet another new route.”

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