Sunday, July 25, 2021
HomeDiariesGiro d'Italia 2009 - Day 1: Stage 15, Forlì - Faenza

Giro d’Italia 2009 – Day 1: Stage 15, Forlì – Faenza

-

Coming down the stairs at 05:00 am to the find the car had been broken into wasn’t a good start to the day.

But that’s life.

The M8, M77, Prestwick, Ryanair and here we are; in the 37 degree heat of Bologna, heading south to Faenza and our credentials.

Faenza
Mile after mile of vines in this part of the world.

Getting the ‘creds’ is always a big relief; there’s usually hassle to get them; it’s always nice to feel those bits of plastic around your neck.

Faenza
Ed studies the Gazetta form guide.

I love the Gazzetta Sportiva (as it is on Sundays); their layout is great, lots of colour photos, interviews, stats and ratings – attractive and easy to take in.

Gerrans effort yesterday got him an 8 out of 10, whilst Simoni scored a measly 4 as the Gazzetta noted; “Simoni, I’ll tempo passa” – ‘his time is past,’ we think?

The list of 180 corridori di 22 squadre still contains seven British riders: Chris Froome (Barloworld), Dan Lloyd and Jez Hunt (Cervelo), Bradley Wiggins and David Millar (Garmin), Charly Wegelius (Silence-Lotto) and Ben Swift (Katyusha).

Only ‘Cav’ has bolted – but how is David Millar going to ride that nocturne in Edinburgh on Saturday night, if he’s here?

Faenza
This way to Faenza.

The road south from Bergamo to our digs in Fano, by way of the stage finish and Stampa (press room) in Faenza is pan flat, with long straights.

A few K to our left is the Adriatic and to our right is Italy’s ‘spine’ of mountains – the further south you go, the hotter it gets.

We put together a wee intro article on the way down, just to warm us up for tomorrow’s real thing, that was molto pronto – it’s good to be in back in business.

Faenza
This way to the Permanence, where our lovely creds await.

Faenza and creds time, no dramas, it’s a miracle; maybe it’s because the stampa was in a chapel?

We were a tad miffed that we were only given one race manual; ironic, because last year they dumped hundreds of them in the street at the start of the final time trial.

Duly credded, there was only one thing to do – find a bar.

Faenza
Dave gets his “access all areas” pass.

The TV was tuned to RAI, the beer was cool, the perfect coffee came from a Faema machine, sponsors of Eddy Merckx back in the late 60’s and early 70’s.

Faenza
The best coffee machine in the world!

The finale was good to watch, but we couldn’t understand why Pauwels (Cérvelo) dropped back from being up the road with Bertagnolli (Diquigiovanni) – especially when he easily won the sprint for second from the little group he ended up in.

It looked like a deal to us – but that’s bike racing!

Diquigiovanni are doing the business here, that’s their second stage win and Rubens Bertogliati was in the break all day, yesterday – ending up second.

Faenza
Leonardo Bertagnolli takes another stage for Diquigiovanni. Photo©Bettini

We high tailed it out of Faenza immediately after we saw the maglia rosa group finish, – we didn’t want caught in the traffic jams.

But the satnav had a bad turn and we ended up on a wee road that was once connected to the autostrada – but not now!

We’re back on course again, headed south for Fano, our digs, a shower and a pizza.

Faenza
Garzelli’s bike gets a hurl up the road (not Dave Millar style though!)

Ale lives there so we’ll be meeting him, no doubt to talk tactics for tomorrow.

Faenza
Liquigas head south, a bit faster than us.

To make the trip more interesting, we have team cars whizzing past us – Liquigas, QuickStep, Lampre, Columbia, Acqua & Sapone; tired riders are sprawled in the seats, thinking about a shower and a massage.

Well, nearly at our junction – need to navigate… a domani e ciao, ciao!

Ed Hood
Ed's been involved in cycling for over 45 years. In that time he's been a successful time triallist, team manager, and sponsor of several teams and clubs. He's also a respected and successful coach, and during the winter months can often be found working in the cabins at the Six Days. Ed remains a massive fan of the sport and couples his extensive contacts with an inexhaustable enthusiasm for the minutiae and the history of our sport.

Related Articles

Giro d’Italia 2012 – Stage 12: Seravezza – Sestri Levante 157km. Back in the Front Seat

We're in Seravezza. 'Sad news, Donna Summer has passed away' said the text from Martyn Frank. That news cast a shadow over a day of bright sunshine and hills. The start was down on the coast - it's not quite beach season, so it's not heaving yet.

Giro d’Italia 2012 – Second Rest Day, Time for Interviews

'Mission accomplished' with Ryder: Dave rattled us through dire weather up to the Garmin Hotel, just over 100 miles away. The Liquigas guys were on their turbos when we arrived - lean, cut looking men. Before the start, I wasn't sure Basso could win, but his policy of loss limiting has taken him to third on GC @ 1:22 on Rodriguez and 52 seconds behind Hesjedal.

Il Giro d’Italia 2014 – Stage 8; Foligno – Montecopiolo, 174 km. Diego Ulissi Scores a Second!

Diego Ulissi (Lampre & Italy); if the broader world of cycling didn’t really know who he was before this Giro – they do now. His first win on Stage Five wasn’t a surprise if you were aware of his terrific end to last season - Milano-Torino, the Coppa Sabatini and the Giro dell’Emilia. Three Italian semi-classics - all very desirable and hard fought – ‘tough and hilly’ is right up his street. But Saturday was different, the real deal, first and second cat. montagnes; and just look at who he beat – Evans, Uran, Quintana, Pozzovivo... As Kris said, it restores your faith in bike racing.

Andrea Tonti – Giro Tales with Cunego and Simoni’s Domestique

Having moved from London in 2016 to Casale Volpe, a small, secluded cycling-orientated B&B in Le Marche region of Central Italy, a gloriously hot July day last summer gave VeloVeritas reader Mike Curtis the chance to meet up and ride, relax and chat over lunch with local ex-pro and gregario di lusso Andrea Tonti.

The Giro d’Italia 2010: Good Times Bad Times

Good Times Bad Times - CIAO! The Giro d’Italia version 2010 has begun. We started racing up in Amsterdam (which, while not technically* part of Italy, was a cool place to start racing from) with a time trial, followed by two road stages. The start of a Grand Tour is always cool — the whole team starts to find extra gears, and the organisation is singing by start time.

Il Giro d’Italia 2014 – Stage 4; Giovinazzo – Bari, 121 km. Rain (almost) Stops Play, Nacer Bouhanni wins

A few years ago in that much missed part of Scottish cycling history which was the Girvan Three Day - old timers like me still want to say; ‘Grants of Girvan,’ the race originally sponsored by that purveyor of the water of life – a stage was curtailed because of snow. The journos did the rounds of riders such as Nacer Bouhanni, management and officials who all said broadly the same thing, that given the conditions it was a wise decision.

At Random

Le Tour de France 2015 – Stage 8; Getting Close to the Race at the Buses

I am staying at my in-laws in Brittany, as I do every summer since I got married and every two or three years it is my base for watching the Tour on the ground. This year things couldn’t be better, with a stage start about 40 minutes east in the city of Rennes and the finish accessible about an hour to the west. I have enjoyed looking at the team cars, buses at the start in previous years so my plan is to find the ‘paddock’ and see how close I can get. With journalists, soigneurs and directeur sportifs all around, the fan can feel part of the event.

Solid Kick-off

Solid Kick-off. Finally we’re underway! And what a start it’s been. Time trial days are always long periods of surprising quietness (and the quiet is always a surprise) punctuated by flurries of furious activity. As team mechanic-cum-philosopher Kris Withington (NZ’s finest mechanic) says, “it’s either full gas work or full gas wait.”

Ed Laverack – National Hill Climb Champion 2019

25 year-old Ed Laverack [SwiftCarbon Pro Cycling] was the fastest man up Haytor on Dartmor in the CTT National Hill Climb Championship relegating Italian continental Colpack team roadman Paul Double - in the colours of VC Venta - and former champion, Richard Bussell [Aerocoach] into second and third spots respectively.

The VV View: Cadel Evans – not a man to ‘say the right thing’

I had one of my secret meetings with Ivan yesterday-I can't tell you when or where, in case the Moderator from Velo Riders tries to arrange a 'hit!' The man from behind the Urals was telling me that we didn't see on Eurosport, after Cadel's win, was the press conference he gave.

Spokes Racing Team Launch, 2016

We headed to the launch of the recent 2016 Spokes Racing Team, the freezing weather failing to curb the enthusiasm of 120 supporters who had all paid £30 per head to attend the event, held in the Old Manor hotel in Lundin Links, Fife. Spokes team owner owner Craig Greive and director sportiv Blair Whiteside had put together quite an evening with guest speakers including former pro and now DS at One Pro Cycling James McCallum (who's still looking fit), the Lord Provost of Fife and Director at Dunfermline Football Club and quite the celebrity and public speaker, Jim Leishman.

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 16; Moirans-en-Montagne – Berne. Peter Sagan Again!

Peter Sagan, again! There’s little left to say about the man but as soon as we walked the last couple of kilometres we knew it was one for him – a sharp cobbled climb up from the river, across a cobbled bridge, past the bear pit then another nippy climb before the 1,000 metre, straight as a dye, pan flat finish straight.