94° GIRO D'ITALIA
THE 150th YEAR CELEBRATIVE TOUR CAPTURED THE HEART OF ITALY
The 94th edition of the Giro d'Italia ended in the embrace of the city of Milan, with the individual time trial that crowned the winner of the race Alberto Contador.
Created as an celebrative event for the 150 years of National Unity, the Corsa Rosa 2011 (Pink Race) was an exciting sporting moment for the challenges it set but, above all, for the moment in which cycling brought to light - aside from the strictly competitive aspect - the extraordinary feelings that the race always manages to stir up: from the genuine tears shed for lost friends, to the fantastic support from a public overjoyed when faced with collective effort, to the joy for a victory which is the result of a magnificent sprint or a solitary run. In every case, feelings that have shown that the convoy which has covered Italy for three weeks has been a "family" and not just a sporting wagon trail.
For this reason, from the Grande Partenza in Venaria Reale to the tri-colour route in Piazza Duomo, the Giro "of men" together with the Giro of Champions, attracted an audience of millions of people around the world, both along the route and on TV and radio. Added to these competitors was the extensive 'community' that followed and, above all, commented on the progress of the race through digital media.
From the sporting point of view, the Giro was exciting and extremely challenging and saw the best racers in the world compete on stretches of beautiful scenery and arduous slopes flanked by cheering crowds who supported their idols from Etna to the Dolomites, from the peaks of the Austrian Tyrol to the Alps which divide us from France, up to the Colle delle Finestre that propelled the players to the final time trial.
There were also several guests who attended the Corsa Rosa to applaud and meet the stars of each stage: from John Elkann and the Danish Prime Minister Rasmussen Lars Løkke in Turin, to the Spanish Consulate in Milan Emilio Fernandez Castano Diaz - Caneja, ready to applaud his compatriot Alberto Contador. Plus, British designer Paul Smith and the Godmother of the Tour, Cristina Capotondi, who presented the famous Trofeo Senza Fine trophy to the winner.
Aside from the purely sporting aspect and all the problems that the organisation of such an event has to deal with, it was a Giro full of characters from other worlds, from other sports who wanted to pay tribute to the hard work of the racers, from great champions to the humblest travelers. Apart from the gossip, the great colourful family of the Giro concluded an adventure that was made possible not only by the athletes but also by the contribution from sponsors and partners who continued to ensure their support for what is considered to be "the toughest race in the world in the world's most beautiful country" and that this year has shown us its heart. Currently, the next Giro d'Italia is already being planned which will commence in Denmark on Saturday, May 5th, 2012 for the tenth start outside national borders in the history of the Corsa Rosa. Three stages in the peninsula of Jutland, between the cities of Herning and Horsens, before returning to the streets of the Bel Paese .
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HISTORY AND ANECDOTES
Milan has always had a close bond with the Giro d'Italia; the capital of Lombardy has been an unmistakable landmark for the race, especially as a finishing line. The headquarters of the Gazzetta dello Sport is in Milan, the daily sporting newspaper and creator/ organiser of the event. There are also thousands of cycling enthusiasts in the city.
The first contest was in 1909. The riders set off from Milan on May 13th at 2:53 in the morning. The race ended on May 30th. The winner, Luigi Ganna, was celebrated at the Arena, carried triumphantly by a multitude of fans. He had raced 2447.9 kms divided into eight stages.
The bike is an ecological and convenient way to travel around the city. Milan boasts 78 kilometres of cycle paths for bike enthusiasts. The Bike Sharing service provides bicycle rentals with daily, monthly or annual subscriptions.
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