Reactions from Vincenzo Nibali and Giulio Ciccone on the eve of the Grande Partenza in Sicily.
The start of the 103rd edition of the Giro d’Italia is now approaching. We are less than 24 hours from the first pedal strokes of the official start Saturday with a 15-kilometer individual time trial scheduled to kick off the Italian Grand Tour.
Following are the reflections of Vincenzo Nibali and Giulio Ciccone.
The Grande Partenza in Sicily
Nibali: “It’s definitely a great emotion to be here at the Giro and, in particular, my home region, Sicily. Unfortunately, this year we will not arrive in the heart of my city, Messina, but we will be close, so there will be some friends of mine, which will be nice. I’m very happy to arrive here. I’m starting to get used to it because we were here in 2008, and also in 2017 we had a few stages of the Giro in Sicily. It’s my favorite time; it feels good to be here,”
“I know quite well all the different climbs up to Etna. I was planning to do some recon here, but unfortunately with the lockdown, there was not really the opportunity to ride this new side. I don’t know if it will be the opportunity to win a stage, but to be honest, we have to remember that the final objective is another conversation.”
Nibali: “At the Worlds, I was feeling good, better than in Tirreno. I think my condition is the same as at the Worlds, so I’m ready to start the Giro. For the rest, we will see, I don’t normally make a prediction on what will happen in the future, I just want to do a good Giro d’Italia, I want to ride well. When it is over, we will see what went well and what didn’t.”
Ciccone: “Well, I have to admit that during the virus, I was not feeling very well. Also, psychologically I was not great and not motivated. I thought I wouldn’t make the start of the Giro, but then once I was feeling better, I started talking with the team, and we did some tests and resumed training. I started feeling motivated again. Of course, there was not much time to train and get ready, but now I am here, and I want to do my best,”
“My role is mainly to help Vincenzo, especially in the last week. I have to admit that maybe I’m not at the top of my condition. I think I will need one week to improve and find the right condition to help the team, especially Vincenzo. But if things go well, I can try to win a stage.”
Stages and Contenders
Nibali: “I think we brought our best men to this Giro, those who have the best condition for the race. Ineos for sure will be a team-leading the peloton for Geraint Thomas, who rode very well at Tirreno-Adriatico, and Mitchelton-Scott for Simon Yates. Talking about stages, I think one of the most decisive will be the one finishing at Laghi di Cancano. Mostly it depends also on the weather we will find on the mountains of the third week.”
Ciccone: “I think the stage finishing in Roccaraso is one of the most important, one of the toughest of the Giro. For me, it’s important because I grew up on that climb. I know we have to be in great condition to do well, but my objective for the Giro is to help Vincenzo do well in GC. Maye for me, I can wait a bit later when I will have better condition.”