John takes the tour back to Gran Sasso - 32 years later

After 32 years, former professional cycling legend John Carlsen will once again try to conquer Gran Sasso, where he reached the peak of his career as winner of Stage 8 of the Giro d'Italia in 1989.

"My participation in the Giro in 1989 was the highlight of my cycling career as I won the eighth stage, which went from Rome to Campo Imperatore, Gran Sasso. The goal lay at the very top of a 27 km incline at a height of 2,400 metres," says John Carlsen, who at that time was the first Dane to have won a mountain stage in the Giro.

Today, John Carlsen works as an Industry Specialist in the software company EG A/S, but he has not given up on the dream of once again seeing the Italian mountain top over his handlebars:

"Since stopping my sports career in 1991, I have not been part of the cycling world. Instead, I chose to enter the business sector, and today I work in sales of advanced software solutions for the construction industry for EG, where I have been for 20 years now. However, cycling has kept me in shape and kept the dream of one day going to Italy and reliving the journey up Gran Sasso," says John Carlsen.

In 2020, the dream began to take shape:

"When EG introduced a so-called Volunteer Day for all employees, where they can spend a day on voluntary work every year, it inspired me to ask whether I could spend the day cycling and whether they would support my idea of reconquering the mountain with a sponsorship if the tour also supported a good cause.

Fortunately, EG came on board, explains John Carlsen, who has joined forces with the charitable organisation, SMILfonden, which works to make everyday life for seriously ill children a little better.

From EG Ballerup to Gran Sasso in 14 days

John Carlsen did not just want to fly to Italy. Instead, he decided to cycle all the way from Denmark, a trip of just under 2,200 km through Germany, Austria and then into Italy and along the Rimini coast to Gran Sasso.

"I succeeded in enticing a good friend to come along on the trip, Kjeld Myhre, who over the years has arranged many bicycle trips abroad and thus also has extensive experience in finding the best routes. So with Kjeld on the trip, I’m sure we’ll find the right way to the top of Gran Sasso," says John Carlsen.

The tour also includes Lennart Holmgren, who will sit behind the wheel in the accompanying escort vehicle there and back.

Due to the corona epidemic, the trip has been postponed several times, so it's now or never. The start date is Friday, 13 August 2021, departing from EG’s location in Ballerup at 10:00 am with an expected arrival at the top of Gran Sasso on Friday, 27 August 2021 at 12:00 pm.

"It would have been fun to cycle while the Giro was underway, but COVID-19 made it impossible. Now we'll have Gran Sasso to ourselves, and perhaps that’s a good thing, because then we can set the pace ourselves for the last metres," says John Carlsen.

About SMILfonden

Founded by Sisse Fisker, Smilfonden’s vision is to improve the lives of children with serious and chronic diseases. The foundation creates valuable communities and improves the quality of life for families with seriously ill and chronically ill children with a variety of diagnoses. This is done by giving the children an important break from illness through social activities both in and outside hospital.

Read more about SMILfonden at https://smilfonden.dk/

About John Carlsen

John Carlsen was born in Vinderød and is a former cyclist. He cycled professionally from 1988-1991 and was the first Dane to win a stage in the Giro d'Italia in 1989. He has also participated three times in the Tour de France and twice in the Vuelta à Espana. John Carlsen currently works as an Industry Specialist in EG Construction.

See John Carlsen’s Facebook page

About EG

EG provides industry software that helps our customers further develop their business. 

EG has more than 1,500 employees working from locations in Scandinavia, Poland, Ukraine and India.  We develop, deliver and service our own software for more than 21,000 customers in the private and public sectors. 

Read more about EG’s volunteer programme https://EG.dk/nyheder/2020/februar/EG-indfoerer-frivilligordning-for-medarbejderne/

Further information

If you are interested in hearing more about John Carlsen’s return to Gran Sasso, please contact him at:

Telephone: +45 5156 9624

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You can also follow his preparations and tour from EG Ballerup to Gran Sasso in Italy. He has created a Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/Carlsens-retour-to-Gran-Sasso-100499335588776, where you can follow his preparations, support SMILfonden and follow along when his tour starts, just as he will provide updates from the road on a daily basis.



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