GreenEDGE Travel Giro d’Italia ExperienceFri 7 Jun 2019
GreenEDGE Travel recently took to the spectacular streets of Italy to witness the Giro d’Italia’s final week of racing live in support of Mitchelton-SCOTT.
Concluding a few early race setbacks and retargeted goals for the team in the Grand Tour’s opening weeks, the fresh, optimistic, encouraging faces of our GreenEDGE Travel guests were welcomed with open arms; the 19 person strong group, all avid, long-time supporters of the team.
The eight-day experience, suited to both riders and spectators, offered an itinerary mixed with scenic, to challenging rides; from the stunning outskirts of Lake Como, to the picturesque, yet daunting Dolomites. Paired with live race viewing from stage starts, mid-race locations and exciting sprint finishes. Included was the thrilling Queen Stage finale that followed the epic Mortirolo pass, contested in truly punishing conditions.
Guests officially connected with the team on the final rest day in Bergamo for a ‘meet and greet’, including a welcome from the riders, followed by a Q and A session discussing their race happenings so far, obstacles overcome and aspirations for the closing week that lay ahead. All fantastic insight for our guests, as big-time supporters of the team and passionate cycling followers.
To add to the experience, they enjoyed a tour of the team bus, followed by some words from head sporting director Matt White and general manager Shayne Bannan, gathering a deeper understanding as to what goes on behind the scenes at a Grand Tour, and the countless hours our support team endure to ensure the best platform possible for our riders to perform at World Tour level.
Ahead of Stage 17, guests took to the stage start in Commezzadurato enjoy the start-line festivities and catch the team in preparation mode, where it was all warm-up’s, final briefings and pre-race banter ahead of another mountainous stage on the menu. This was a prime opportunity to see the team in the zone, undergoing their daily pre-stage routine. 17 days in and the mood was relaxed, positive and understandably for some, a little weary!
The focal point of the experience, came on Stage 19 when our trio of spectating guests took to the seats of the team cars to witness the action firsthand from the race convoy itself, to teaming up with our soigneurs and hitting the various feed zones across the stage route. The day proving all-go from the gun, with the determined Esteban Chaves on the attack and in the breakaway, eventually spectacularly battling it out up the final ascent to San Martino di Castrozza, storming across the line to claim an emphatic, emotional stage victory. What a day to be alongside the team to witness the elation and celebrations that followed. A memory and experience that will undoubtedly last a long time for our guests.
For the riding contingent of the group, also an incredibly momentous, action packed day, taking on the stunning hairpin lined Passo San Boldo by bike and then setting up camp atop, embracing the electric atmosphere, as excited crowds of fans dotted each bend in cheer and excitement; our guests getting right in the thick of the madness as they awaited the race to hit its slopes. Applause and encouragement was in full steam, as Chaves stormed up the climb at the head of the race. It was then all eyes glued to big screen entertainment, joining the locals at the summit bar to see the thrilling final moments of the race and cry out in delight and triumph as he crossed the line a champion - prosecco and ‘Saulit’s’ for all.
The closing highlight came on the final stage in Verona when riders rounded out a huge three weeks, packed with a roller coaster of emotion; from tough times and initial disappointment, to stage success and some fighting performances. The final, consisting of one last race against the clock around a 17 km fast, fiery circuit around the city streets. Guests were able to ride a hot lap of the course on closed roads pre-stage to scope out what was in store for the riders and get a true feel for the final testing moments of suffering they’d without doubt be experiencing concluding a challenging 20 days of racing in the legs.
Once underway, it was all cheer and support for the team, followed by a final congratulatory toast alongside to round out the Giro and an incredible experience for all.
Overall, a fantastic 8 days for GreenEDGE Travel: bucket list climbs were conquered, many-a race making moment was witnessed and sporting heroes were met. Thank you to all for your positive energy and appreciated ongoing support throughout the trip and across the season. It has and continues to further fuel our motivation to strive for success!