Giro d'Italia race director Mauro Vegni was rightly proud of this year's race at the conclusion in Milan on Sunday, hinting the 2016 Giro d'Italia will visit more of the south of the country. The full route will be revealed on October 5 after the end-of-season Il Lombardia Classic but news of the start location is expected in June. Following the success of the Grande Partenza in Northern Ireland and Ireland last year, the 2016 race is likely to start outside of Italy, perhaps in Austria, Berlin or Poland.
"I'm very happy with how the Giro ended. Even on the last stage in Milan things ended differently than expected. That proves that even if you design a route, it is always the riders who decide the outcome of the race," Vegni said, refuting suggestions that the stage 14 59.4km time trial had ruined Fabio Aru's chances of victory.
"I usually listen to my critics, especially if they're constructive. But I'd design the Giro exactly the same if I had a second chance. I think the times in the overall classification are fair and as expected. The time trial was important for Aru but I'd suggest the Verbania stage saw him lose more in terms if minutes and morale.
"We designed the route with all our staff, with people who have raced the Giro d'Italia. We think the 60km time trial was balanced."
Vegni defended his decision to give the CCC Sprandi, Bardiani-CSF, Androni Sidermec and Southeast teams wildcard invitations even if they struggled to break through the dominance of Astana and Tinkoff-Saxo. He was critical of some of the WorldTour teams who made little impact during the three weeks.
"It's our philosophy to help young Italian riders develop and give them a chance to ride alongside some of the biggest stars in the peloton, not every one is like Aru and rides for a major team," he said, also talking about rider safety after several accidents with spectators and serious crashes.
"If you look at the classification, you'll see that if several WorldTour teams hadn't started, then nobody would have noticed. Having 20 riders less in the peloton would help safety but it has to be a shared idea and confirmed by the international federation. The problem is that I'd always choose Italians (wildcard) teams and the French will also choose French teams."