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Race reliant on public funding to continue
The Giro del Trentino could be at risk for 2014 if organisers cannot secure renewed funding from local government. The mountainous stage race is one of the key stepping stones towards the Giro d’Italia and has run uninterrupted since 1979.
“There’s no point in dancing around it. As of today, the Giro del Trentino, even with an army of around 400 volunteers, has considerable costs. Without the public contribution from the Autonomous Province of Trento, it can’t be organised,” race organisation head Giacomo Santini told local newspaper L’Adige.
In recent years, the province of Trentino has contributed €250,000 per annum to the running of the Giro del Trentino through the local tourism board, a figure which Santini explains makes up “more or less half” of the race’s budget.
The make-up of the local government has changed following elections in October, however, and it remains to be seen if the newly installed provincial council will continue to contribute as much to the Giro del Trentino’s budget.
“I’ve written to the new tourism councillor and asked for a meeting,” Santini said. “I hope that the Giro del Trentino’s 38 years of history and its enormous visibility in the media, which guarantees undeniable benefits for tourism here, continue to be considered worthwhile.”
The irony for the organisation is that, from a purely sporting point of view, the Giro del Trentino appears to be in rude health. The presence of eventual winner Vincenzo Nibali, Cadel Evans and Bradley Wiggins in 2013 was a considerable boost to the international profile of the race, which takes place in the week of the Ardennes classics.
A similarly high-quality field is expected from April 15-18 next year, and RAI television has reportedly already guaranteed two hours of live daily coverage using its full Giro d’Italia technical crew
“Having a date so close to the Giro d’Italia attracts a lot of big names building their form for the corsa rosa,” Santini said. “The previous council had seen for themselves the added values [of the race] and considered the Giro del Trentino to be an sound economic commitment in terms of tourism, but also for agriculture and promoting local produce.”