Giro d’Italia organiser RCS Sport has appointed Paolo Bellino to the position of general manager. Bellino arrives from the Italian Track and Field Federation and will take up his new role from January 13.
Bellino’s appointment follows the dismissal of Giro d’Italia director Michele Acquarone earlier this month. Acquarone, who served as Chief Operating Officer of RCS Sport, was fired following an investigation into the alleged misappropriation of some €10 million from the company’s accounts. Acquarone has vehemently denied any wrongdoing.
The 43-year-old Bellino is a former international 400 metres runner, and is currently general secretary of the Italian Track and Field Federation. He has been operations consultant for the International Olympic Committee since 2010 and worked on the organising committees of both the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin and the 2013 World Master Games.
It remains to be seen if Bellino will play as public a role in the organisation of the Giro d’Italia as his predecessor Acquarone, who was a keen proponent of the globalisation of the race and of increased interaction between organisers and fans.
Mauro Vegni remains as the Giro’s technical director. The experienced Vegni was in charge of the sporting aspects and course design under Acquarone, and he will continue in that role.
Bellino’s appointment is the third major change in the RCS Sport boardroom since news of the alleged misappropriation first broke in September. Raimondo Zanaboni replaced Flavio Biondi as chairman, while Riccardo Taranto was appointed as CEO.