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-  Cycling through the Dolomites  (© Aurora Photos/Alamy)

This is an aerial view of the Maratona dles Dolomites, a cycling race that’s not for the faint-hearted. The most dedicated of these competitors will pedal through seven spectacular mountain passes as they ride 138 kilometres through the Dolomites of north-east Italy. The single-day race was first held in 1987 and attracts over 30,000 applicants every year, but only 9,000 riders can take part.