New Giro d'Italia race director Michele Aquarone watched as Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank) carefully placed the il trofeo senza fine on the stage at the 2012 route presentation in Milan on Sunday. The Italian looked on as Contador even gave the iconic, gold-plated award a polish, and it will be with that care and attention that Aquarone will hope to look after the riders at next year’s Giro.
At the unveiling of the new route, Aquarone took time to assure riders and the media that rider relations were paramount to organisers RCS and that in order to build bridges after the frictions of this year, transfers would be down by 30 percent. The Giro boss also told Cyclingnews, in this exclusive video, that he aimed to have all riders in their hotels well before 9:00 pm each evening – something that was a rarity in recent years.
2012 is a departure from the Giro’s recent strategy of shock and awe, in which they’ve aimed to provide spectacular racing by providing an almost impossibly tough route. Next year a more "human" route will see sprinters have more opportunities, while even the most talented climbers probably welcomed a parcours less demanding that 2011’s.
In this exclusive video with Cyclingnews, Aquarone talks about the 2012 Giro d’Italia route, the riders he’d like to attract to the race and the importance of fans within the sport.