On 13th October 2012 thirty cyclists left Axminster in Devon and rode 769 miles to the Slow Food Salone del Gusto festival in Turin, Italy, in memory of Philippa Corbin. We rode to raise awareness of depression and raise funds for two charities.

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With Gill & Tim at The Lingotto

As Gavin mentioned, blogging over the last few days has been difficult as we all tried to see as much as we could of Turin and then have wound way back to the UK via various means. So although it seems a while ago now, I feel Friday evening is really worth a mention…..

As a culmination of Slow Ride to Turin, the organisers of the Slow Food festival kindly put on a meal to draw attention to our achievement and to highlight the importance of ‘slow’ living for mental well being. The meal was held at the very top of the Lingotto building (for those that don’t know, this is an old car factory and also where the famous car chase in ‘The Italian Job’ was filmed). This meal was part of the official slow food programme and 20 Euros from each ticket sold is being donated to the charities we are supporting. Our part of the deal was to find 2 chefs to come out to Turin to cook the meal…..

Luckily Philippa had been good friends with 2 very talented chefs: River Cottage head chef Gill Meller and Tim Maddams who had worked with her at the RC canteen in Axminster. When we invited them to come and cook at Salone del Gusto, they were both delighted and honoured to do so.

So on Friday night, the majority of the cyclists swapped their lycra for dresses and shirts and headed to the top of the Lingotto. And what an unforgettable evening we all had! Seeing the perfectly set tables, laden with polished glasses we knew we were in for a pretty good evening ahead. But what was it to be? Italian or English? Using classic Italian ingredients Gill and Tim carefully prepared a magnificent feast with a River Cottage twist. It was divine! Just as the accompanying (generously sponsored) wines from Roero Arneis were (http://www.negroangelo.it/ing/vini.asp). How Philippa would have relished every mouthful of this special meal. The soft, fresh Itallian burreta cheese to start was just wonderful, my favorite was the beautifully cured mullet (course 3 or 4 I think), but the most unique and memorable was the pudding: pears accompanied by dolcelatte ice cream – a magnificent creation!

Spirits were high and the meal continued well into the night… it was gone 2pm by the time we got in our taxi (on the roof) and were driven down the famous ramps – a nice finishing touch to the evening (though we wish we could have cycled)!