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Giro d'Italia 2014

Date range:
May 9 - June 1
  • Giro d'Italia, ITA, WorldTour
  • Stages Expand the race menu
    • Stage 1

      Distance:
      21.7km
      Start location:
      Belfast
      End location:
      Belfast
    • Stage 2

      Distance:
      219km
      Start location:
      Belfast
      End location:
      Belfast
    • Stage 3

      Distance:
      187km
      Start location:
      Armagh
      End location:
      Dublin
    • Rest Day

      Start location:
      End location:
    • Stage 4

      Distance:
      112km
      Start location:
      Giovinazzo
      End location:
      Bari
    • Stage 5

      Distance:
      203km
      Start location:
      Taranto
      End location:
      Viggiano
    • Stage 6

      Distance:
      257km
      Start location:
      Sassano
      End location:
      Montecassino
    • Stage 7

      Distance:
      211km
      Start location:
      Frosinone
      End location:
      Foligno
    • Stage 8

      Distance:
      179km
      Start location:
      Foligno
      End location:
      Montecopiolo
    • Stage 9

      Distance:
      172km
      Start location:
      Lugo
      End location:
      Sestola
    • Rest Day 2

      Start location:
      End location:
    • Stage 10

      Distance:
      173km
      Start location:
      Modena
      End location:
      Salsomaggiore
    • Stage 11

      Distance:
      249km
      Start location:
      Collecchio
      End location:
      Savona
    • Stage 12

      Distance:
      41.9km
      Start location:
      Barbaresco
      End location:
      Barolo (ITT)
    • Stage 13

      Distance:
      157km
      Start location:
      Fossano
      End location:
      Rivarolo Canavese
    • Stage 14

      Distance:
      164km
      Start location:
      Agliรจ
      End location:
      Oropa
    • Stage 15

      Distance:
      225km
      Start location:
      Valdengo
      End location:
      Montecampione
    • Rest Day 3

      Start location:
      End location:
    • Stage 16

      Distance:
      139km
      Start location:
      Ponte di Legno
      End location:
      Val Martello/Martelltal
    • Stage 17

      Distance:
      208km
      Start location:
      Sarnonico
      End location:
      Vittorio Veneto
    • Stage 18

      Distance:
      171km
      Start location:
      Belluno
      End location:
      Rif. Panarotta
    • Stage 19

      Distance:
      26.8km
      Start location:
      Bassano del Grappa
      End location:
      Cima Grappa (ITT)
    • Stage 20

      Distance:
      167km
      Start location:
      Maniago
      End location:
      Monte Zoncolan
    • Stage 21

      Distance:
      172km
      Start location:
      Gemona
      End location:
      Trieste
  • Race history

June 01, Stage 21: Gemona - Trieste 172km

By:
Cycling News
Published:
April 16, 2014, 20:27 BST,
Updated:
May 06, 2014, 4:30 BST

Jun 1, 2014 - Gemona - Trieste, 172 km

LOCAL HERO
That'll be Giordano Cottur then. In 1946 the stage to Trieste was heavy with symbolism. Italy had the city, but Tito's Yugoslavia wanted it, and so a scruffy little war over sovereignty continued long after the cessation. Slavic militants were determined that Trieste would be theirs, and therefore the Giro had no place there. As the riders approached the town they were pelted with stones, gunfire was heard and the road blocked with all manner of detritus.

The organizers annulled the stage, but local boy Cottur was having none of it. He knew that the city would erupt if they didn't appear, so he and 16 other patriots insisted on doing just that. American armoured cars dropped them on the outskirts of town, whereupon they saddled up once more. Cottur won the "stage" amidst delirious scenes, and calamity was averted.

SEE, HEAR, FEEL...
Fittingly enough, we're concluding our Giro d'Irlanda and Italia with the mighty James Joyce. There's a very fine bronze of him on Trieste's Ponte Rosso, wistfully overlooking the Grand Canal. Question is: What is the author of arguably the greatest 20th century novel doing here, and what's he to do with the Giro d'Italia?
Joyce lived in the city, on and off, for fifteen years. He taught English (by all accounts badly), fell out with his brother, drank himself into near-oblivion and generally drove his poor wife to distraction. He also became a father here, and cooked up any number of hapless moneymaking schemes. He was to become a cinema magnate, import Irish tweed, all manner of hair-brained ideas.

Above all though, it was in Trieste that he began seriously to conceptualize "Ulysses". It would become masterpiece formed in Ireland, and in Italy, and bequeathed to all of humanity. Does that sound at all familiar?

MOMENT IN TIME
Back, finally, to 1919, appropriately enough for the birth of a legend. A 21-year-old named Costante Girardengo had won the 430 kilometre stage to Rome at the 1914 Giro but then the war had written off four editions. He wasn't favoured to win here (Azzini and Belloni were) but on stage two he smashed it to bits. He rolled into Trieste nearly four minutes ahead, and would hoover up seven of the ten stages in all. He won the Giro by almost an hour, and the Gazzetta gave him the moniker the campionissimo.

That he most certainly was. Though he only won one more Giro – something always seemed to go wrong – he helped himself to 30 stages. Six times he won Milan-Sanremo, and three times the Tour of Lombardy. Not bad for a kid from Piedmont nicknamed the "Novi Runt".

SCINTO SAYS
Well that's it! You count up who you have left, then reckon with you've achieved and what you haven't…

I can't give you any great insight into the journey, excepting to say that the Giro giveth and the Giro taketh away. Two years ago it was fantastic for us, and last year it almost finished me, my team and my career in cycling. We don't have the budget of Sky, BMC, people like that, but I guarantee you that my team will race aggressively and give their absolute best. Hopefully, then, the public and sponsors will appreciate the efforts we make.

We know we're lucky to have been given another chance, but I also think we were blameless in what happened last time, and that my riders deserve it. I guarantee we'll not be found wanting as regards desire, heart or respect for the Giro.

E allora? Ci vediamo a Trieste!


2014 Giro d'Italia map for stage 21
2014 Giro d'Italia profile for stage 21