Thursday, April 21, 2011


Another sunny start to the day in Riva del Garda cooking my porridge in the YHA grounds after having the cappucino in the restaurant . This place has had a make over 8 years ago but the old fellow serving the coffee is as cantankerous as ever .

Start was near yesterday's finish so a long haul uphill which allowed me to make contact with a number of personalities before the start , which incidently was down the road to where i started the day. Rode alongside Popovitch for a while until he reminded me we met last year on the route of the Giro d Italia in this same region .He had just returned at that time from the Tour of California . Later stopped to chat with Garzelli and then Rory Sutherland . Like myself he has not heard of an Organisation of the same calibre as Help4Heroes of UK or Wounded Warriors of USA that operates in Australia .

Ledro has a tourist office where the character in the photo with me hangs out , he is representing the 5000 year old (skeleton that was dug up ?) found in the Otztal in recent times .

Short cut the course today by going through Storo and Tiene so as to arrive at the finish line well before the racers using some of the roads from 1999 routes . Probably as many kilos as the official route but the scenery was spectacular . No big screen to watch the action which is something the event needs to address .

Another tight finish with Duarte (94) crossing the line in front of Scarpone and Machado with the rest of the peleton following in their own time . Scarpone looked quite fresh as he passed into the ceremonial area as did Machado . As usual i got to meet some of the local political personalities to whom the journalists were able to explain the reasons for my prescense . Amongst others here , I was able to chat with Francesco Moser and Maurizio Fondriest several times during the afternoon . Most of the UCI officials supervising this Giro i have met at previous ProTour Events .

Tonight i am a guest of the Local White Cross that provides the Ambulance service in this area . Luckily for me the Ladies speak better English than my Italian . As usual the men are reticent to use their English for fear that they will make mistakes , little do they realise that i can't string two words together outside talking about bikes or food .

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