Two stages from the conclusion of the Corsa Rosa category race, the team from Milan is confirmed as the star of the national circuits.
Cyclocross is a speciality that in Italy, as opposed to what happens in northern Europe, does not yet enjoy the same media attention reserved for other types of cycling, especially road cycling. Yet, thinking of the talents of the World Tour we cannot forget Van Der Poel and Van Aert. Well, how can we forget that these champions started out on the dirty tracks of cyclocross, elbowing their way out of the mud?
This tells us how a multidisciplinary approach is essential for a cyclist. It tells us how a youth, through cyclocross, can develop important skills that will be helpful on the road, resulting in a more complete rider.
This is why it is important to look at what is happening in the cyclocross movement here at home, and this is why Ursus has supported for several years the most representative Italian team, Selle Italia Guerciotti Elite, who today is the key player in the Giro d’Italia category race.
GIRO D’ITALIA, CYCLOCROSS: PLENTY OF EMOTIONS FOR SELLE ITALIA GUERCIOTTI ELITE
The cyclocross race of the Giro d’Italia has reached the fifth stage out of the seven scheduled. Starting on October 4th from Jesolo (VE), the race moved week by week to Corridonia (MC), Ladispoli (RM), Osoppo (UD) and Gallipoli (LE). The Selle Italia Guerciotti Elite team gave it their all starting from day one: the national champion Jakob Dorigoni took a win over Cristian Cominelli in the men’s open category, while his companions Gaia Realini and Francesca Baroni (in the tricolour jersey) were close to victory in the women’s open category, giving way to Sara Casasola.
The duels seen at the premiere will be repeated later as the recurring theme of this spectacular Giro. At the men’s level, Dorigoni initially kept his rival at a distance, also winning in Corridonia and Ladispoli, and then left the Maglia Rosa in Friuli, following a mechanical failure which left him in seventeenth position. The tricolour of the Selle Italia Guerciotti Elite team promptly responded before the break, taking some points away from the champion Cominelli at the photo finish in Gallipoli. This return to victory keeps hopes up for the South Tyrolean promise in view of the last two difficult appointments in Ferentino (FR) and Sant’Elpidio a Mare (FM).
The challenge is even more open on the women’s scene. The women of the Selle Italia Guerciotti Elite team, overtaking their way to the top of the general ranking, are playing for the Maglia Rosa point by point. The Italian champion Francesca Baroni, third in Jesolo, left her mate in second place in Corridonia. Baroni won again in Ladispoli and Osoppo, but the rookie Realini always managed to stay close to the top positions. This allowed her to snatch the jersey from Baroni again, overtaking her both at the finish line in Gallipoli and in the general ranking thanks to a final sprint full of grit and power. In short, both amazing ladies of the yellow-black team remain in contention for the final victory: the last two stages will tell us which of them will prevail.
SELLE ITALIA GUERCIOTTI ELITE, TALENTS IN PINK
The 2020 Giro is giving great satisfaction to the team chaired by Alessandro Guerciotti. However, it is important to underline that the Milan-based team is very familiar with achieving major results. Indeed, the commitment of the yellow-black team to the Italian cyclocross movement should be remembered, a commitment which, over the years, has helped to discover rough diamonds such as Vito di Tano (former world champion, today the technical director of the team), Daniele Pontoni, Marco Aurelio Fontana , Alice Maria Arzuffi and Gioele Bertolini.
CYCLOCROSS IN ITALY, THE NUMBERS ARE RISING
The Cyclocross Giro d’Italia is, as mentioned, a stage event which is considered an outsider in the collective imagination of Italian fans; however, something seems to be changing with this edition. The desire for cycling is great and the numbers prove it.
An example? The Osoppo stage, aired by RAI on October 30th, was the most viewed programme within the Raisport schedule of the day. In Corridonia, on the other hand, despite the concern for the spread of the Covid-19 epidemic, 900 people registered to compete. In this regard, we must applaud the organization of an event that has been able to demonstrate genuine respect for anti-contagion safety rules.
In short: Italians like cyclocross. Of course, we haven’t yet reached the levels of attention found in Belgium and in the Netherlands (where it is a national sport), but the path has been traced for many young people. Today, there is one more chance for them to improve and have fun in complete safety, competing on muddy terrain to become the Van Der Poel of tomorrow.