The Giro winner’s trophy is called the Senza Fine Trophy, an endless cup, because every year it is higher, since a plaque with the name of the new winner is added to the spiral. Italy is tradition and history, also in cycling. The Greek temples of Agrigento, where the goal is on the first Sunday, are millenary. And the first stone of the Duomo of Milan, where it will arrive on October 25, was laid in 1386. Perhaps that is why, cyclists who want to extend their career to the maximum are presented this Saturday at the exit of Palermo with the intention of showing that they haven’t said their last word.
At 33, 34 and 35 years old you can keep winning. It is not sacrilege. Having been born in the mid-eighties, you can aspire to a great return. The 2020 Giro turns the other way around current cycling, full of cherubs. It has wrinkles and a lot of honor.
The Giro 2020 turns the opposite of current cycling, full of cherubs. At 33, 34 and 35, you can still win a big one
If something has been more than evident in the last two campaigns, it is that bicycles belong to young people. Pogacar’s triumph on the Tour only confirmed the enthronement of a new generation. Remco Evenepoel (who had the Giro on his calendar until his serious fall in Il Lombardia), Bernal, Van Aert, Van der Poel, Hirschi, Carapaz, Ewan, Sosa, Dani Martínez, Enric Mas, Vlasov, Ackermann … they are names that begin to be on everyone’s lips.
None are in Italy. None of them reach 28 years of age, an age that for a long time was considered the ideal one for the maturity of the runner. Now every time the boys go to professionalism earlier and raise their arms being more beardless. They no longer wait, they are no longer content to watch and learn. They land and are competitive from day one, promoting a generational struggle, the metaphorical killing of the father.
Younger than Pogacar and Bernal
The phenomenon Remco Evenepoel had the Giro on his calendar until his serious fall in Il Lombardia
But there is a line of leaders that is not going away yet, like dominoes that resist falling. They do not let themselves eat the land. They have not said their last word and have chosen the Autumn Tour to make themselves heard and shout that they are not finished.
None like Vincenzo Nibali. He shark de Messina is 35 years old and in Palermo he begins his twenty-third grand tour. Contador did 18, to put it in context. The Trek leader has won the big three and has been on the podium 11 times, once less than the great Eddy Merckx. The Italian raced his first Giro in 2007 and will be the only one at the start who knows what it’s like to hang the pink in Milan (2013 and 2016). In case the Sicilian lacks motivation, the first three stages will be run on his land, with a climb to Etna volcano on the third day.
The only winner at the start
The Messina Shark, winner in 2013 and 2016, kicks off his 23rd grand tour and seeks his twelfth podium
One less candle Geraint Thomas has blown. The Welshman ran out of Tour (Ineos called him and Froome off) and wants to get even. Winner of the Tour in 2018 and second in 2019, Thomas favors a more classic route, with three time trials: first stage, 14th and 21st and last. In total, he will have 64.9 km to make a difference and defend himself in the high mountains of the last week thanks to the block and the pace of Ineos.
At 33 years old, the Dutch climber Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo) still dreams of the fall that took him away from the 2016 Giro when he had it almost in his pocket. The race will go back through the Stelvio, where it crashed into a block of snow and ice that time. It remains to be seen how long the peloton receives on October 22 at 2,700 meters.
The Mitchelton Leader
Along with Nibali and Thomas, Simon Yates also has a big one, the 2018 Vuelta, and he already knows what it’s like to go in pink for 13 days
The fourth man is Jakob Fuglsang (Astana). The 35-year-old Dane always aims high but does not quite round off the work, like Majka (31) or Kelderman (29). Your team has two leaders. The only one of the favorites who will double two weeks after finishing the Tour is Miguel Ángel López (26). They call him Superman for a reason. The Colombian from Astana, third in the pink rush In 2018, he lost the third step of the podium in the La Planche de Belles Filles time trial. He was the other great loser of that day after Roglic.
In addition to Nibali and Thomas, Simon Yates (Mitchelton) is the other one who has a big one in his record, the 2018 Vuelta a España. That same year he was 13 days leader in the Giro. Then he lacked trade and experience. Now, coming from winning the Tirreno-Adriatico, he is already 28 years old and more wrinkled