News shorts from the Giro d'Italia
Everyday during the Giro d'Italia we dig up the best the news snippets and inside information.
Today we look at the long day the riders face to race on Ischia, the Twitter love between Bernhard Eisel and Nacer Bohanni after the stage one sprint, recall the last time the Giro d'Italia visited Ischia and remember Italian legend Gino Bartali on the anniversary of his death.
The 17.4km team time trial is a short, intense effort but stage two will be a long day for the riders and every one at the Giro d'Italia due to the need to sail to Ischia island.
The riders had an early wake up call and caught a ferry at 9:30, arriving just before lunch. They had a quick meal and then headed out to study the very technical course.
The Colombia team is the first off at 15:40 local time, with the last team finishing at 17:15. After the stage the riders will travel back to the Italian mainland by ferry, sailing to Sorrento, south of Naples, ready for Monday's road stage to Marina di Ascea.
Not surprisingly, the teams were not too happy to spend so much time travelling.
"I think it would have been better for everybody if the team time trial had been the first stage. Getting back and forth to Ischia on Sunday is going to be complicated from a logistical point of view, but that’s just one of things we have to accept," Astana manager Giuseppe Martinelli said.
Bernhard Eisel is not riding the Giro d'Italia this year but was in the action immediately after the stage one finish, tweeting about Nacer Bouhanni's sprinting.
The French national champion bumped Adam Blythe (BMC) off Cavendish's wheel with a head butt and then finished third behind Cavendish and Elia Viviani (Cannondale).
Eisel tweeted: "Send home @BouhanniNacer before somebody gets killed! Stop him before its too late!"
However Bouhanni is also on Twitter and sarcastically replied: "@EiselBernhard I love you Bernhard ! ;-)"
Remembering Gino Bartali
Today is the anniversary of the death of legendary Italian rider and three-time Giro d'Italia winner Gino Bartali.
The Tuscany-born rider won the Giro d'Italia in 1936, 1937 and again in 1946, after the second world war. He also won the Tour de France in 1938 and 1948, in a long career that included a fierce rivalry with fellow Italian Fausto Coppi.
Bartali died at the age of 85 and always attended the Giro d'Italia, often revealing anecdotes about his career and the races. He was nick-named Ginettaccio for his stubborn character and determination to give up.
Laurent Pichon (FDJ) was one of several riders to crash hard during stage one of the Giro d'Italia on the slick roads of Naples.
The Frenchman landed on his face and needed four stitches on a cut to chin and one on his upper lip. He also broke two teeth.
The Giro d'Italia is back on Ischia after 54 years. In 1959 the tiny island hosted an individual time trial over 31km. Antonino Catalano (Bianchi) won the stage, beating Jacques Anquetil by 52 seconds and Rik Van Looy by 1:07. Charly Gaul won that year's Giro.
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