Cicco’s Vuelta: Week 1 Review

7th in GC, the Italian is facing for the first time the Spanish GT

After nine stages, the first rest day has arrived at the Vuelta a España. For the Trek-Segafredo GC leader Giulio Ciccone it is the chance to take stock of what has happened so far.

“It was a hard start of Vuelta. We rode nine tough stages, none of which were ever really easy. In the sprinters’ stages, because of the wind, there was a lot of tension and stress. These are factors that make a race more than tough. The uphill stages have been covered at a really high pace. And then there was the heat factor. In short, it was a really tough first part of the race.

“My strategy of the day to day won’t change. I’m “learning” to be a leader in a GT, to not just evaluate the single day but the whole race. There have been good days, like yesterday’s and the mixed ones with the wind. Others have been less so, for different reasons. I’ll take stock at the end, but I can say I’m satisfied with how things are going, especially in the management of the race and the team.”

MOLINA DE ARAGON, SPAIN - AUGUST 17: Giulio Ciccone of Italy and Team Trek - Segafredo competes during the 76th Tour of Spain 2021, Stage 4 a 163,9km stage from El Burgo de Osma to Molina de Aragón 1134m / @lavuelta / #LaVuelta21 / on August 17, 2021 in Molina de Aragón, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

“Clearly my performance has to be evaluated in the context of the race and of my competitors. The Vuelta has confirmed its expectations, with many big names going really strong. Roglic, Yates, Mas, Lopez, Bernal, Carapaz, just to mention the first ones. For me, right now, talking about a podium would be unrealistic, but that doesn’t mean I’m stopping to aim as high as possible and cultivate the goal of making my mark on the race. There are two very intriguing weeks ahead. With this riding pace, a lot can happen. I have to be ready and face every challenge with intelligence. Day after day.”