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Remco Evenepoel: My dream is to be ready for the 2021 Giro d'Italia

Deceuninck-QuickStep's Remco Evenepoel at the 2019 GP Cycliste de Montréal
Deceuninck-QuickStep's Remco Evenepoel eyes Giro d'Italia for Grand Tour debut (Image credit: Getty Images)

Remco Evenepoel has said he hopes to ride the 2021 Giro d’Italia, despite a near two-month break from training, describing the race route as “really hard but really beautiful” in a video message shown during the presentation on Italian television. 

The talented, young Belgian had planned to make his Grand Tour debut at the 2020 Giro d’Italia but crashed out of Il Lombardia and fractured his hip a few weeks before. He returned to training in November but was then forced to take a further break between mid-December and mid-February to allow his fracture to fully heal.

Evenepoel was given the green light to train indoors on February 8 and ventured outdoors for the first time on February 19. He joined his Deceuninck-QuickStep teammates during their recon ride for Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on Wednesday, but has still to reveal when he will return to racing. 

The Deceuninck-QuickStep team have promised to take a cautious approach to Evenepoel’s return, but the Giro d’Italia remains a strong possibility even if he may not be fit enough to target the overall classification.  

Evenepoel seems keen to ride the Giro d’Italia.

“Ciao amici Italiani. As you all know, I’m finally riding my bike again and training outside. My dream is to be ready for the 2021 Giro and I’ll do everything I can to be ready,” he said in the short video message, broadcast by Italian channel RAI during the route presentation.

“The course of this year’s Giro seems really hard but really beautiful, so I think it’ll be a nice race. 

“I’m really curious to experience the unique atmosphere of the Giro and the Italian atmosphere and all the amazing tifosi. Take care, stay safe and see you soon. Ciao, ciao."

The 2021 Giro d’Italia will start on Saturday May 8, giving Evenepoel exactly three months to return to fitness. 

Following the news of his setback in January, Evenepoel did set out a ‘Plan A’ and a ‘Plan B’ – the former being to target the Giro at full strength, the latter being to target the Olympic Games, Vuelta a España, World Championships, and Il Lombardia.

The 2021 Giro d’Italia starts in Turin with a 9km individual time trial and includes six mountain finishes, seven other hilly stages, and almost 47,000 meters of climbing before a final 29.4km time trial to central Milan.

Egan Bernal (Ineos Grenadiers), Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ), Vincenzo Nibali (Trek-Segafredo) and Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious) are amongst those who have already confirmed their presence, while Israel Start-Up Nation have still to confirm if Chris Froome will ride the Giro d’Italia as he tries to rebuild his form before the Tour de France.