Traverse City Record-Eagle

Northern Living

April 28, 2013

Group gears up for cycling tour of Tuscany


Steve and Deb Westphal have been on all three — soon to be four — cycling tours, the first of which Deb helped research.

The couple began road riding as summer training for ski racing and now ride five days a week in good weather, putting in between 2,500 and 3,000 miles a year.

But they especially enjoy cycling in scenic Europe — home of classic bicycle races like the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia — where cyclists are given a certain amount of respect.

“Seeing the country from a bike is way different than seeing it from the seat of a car,” said Steve Westphal, 58, of Traverse City. “And there’s something really cool about being in these (ancient) walled cities. It’s a great time.

“It’s completely foreign — we don’t speak the language, for the most part, and the food is incredible and incredibly different. And we’re doing it with a great group of people and having an epic time.”

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