News Round-up: Giro d'Italia 2024 confirmed to start in Piemonte

Elsewhere, Imanol Erviti has retired, Chris Froome will ride on in 2024 and we bring you the racing results from Turkey

Clock18:38, Monday 9th October 2023
The first three stages of the 2024 Giro d'Italia will take place in Piemonte

© RCS/Giro d'Italia

The first three stages of the 2024 Giro d'Italia will take place in Piemonte

Turin to play host for the 2024 Giro d'Italia, before the earliest summit finish in 35 years

Ahead of the full route being confirmed on Friday October 13 during La Gazzetta dello Sport's Festival of Sport, the Giro d'Italia's organisers, RCS, have announced that the 2024 Grande Partenza will take place in the north-westerly region of Piemonte. Turin will play host to the first stage, just as it did in 2021.

Home to the likes of Constance Giradengo and Fausto Coppi back in the day, and more recently, champions like Filippo Ganna, Piemonte is a region steeped in cycling tradition and it is for this reason that the area has four times played host to especially symbolic Giro d'Italia Grandi Partenza.

First hosting the beginning of the Giro d'Italia in 1961, Piemonte celebrated the 100th anniversary of the unification of Italy, whilst its return to the start of the race in 2011 equally marked the 150th anniversary. A decade later it was time to produce Italy's first big sporting event following the outbreak of COVID-19, and next year's Grande Partenza will honour the lives of those lost in the 1949 Superga plane tragedy.

On that fateful day some 74 years ago, 31 members of a chartered flight carrying the Torino football team - commonly known as the Grande Torino owing to their five conquests of the Seria A title - were killed when the plane veered into the Superga hill. Onboard were players, coaching staff, club officials, journalists and the flight crew.

We will unite two symbols of Italy in the world like the Giro d’Italia and the Invincibili of the Grande Torino," commented the president of the RCS, Urbano Cairo. "It will be a special moment, in which the epic tales of the heroes in Maglia Rosa will intertwine with those of the heroes in Maglia Granata."

Kicking off with an undulating route from Venaria Reale to Torino on 4 May 2024, stage 1 will visit the Superga climb on what is sure to be a poignant moment for the nation. Stage 3 will present the first chance for the sprinters between Novara and Fossano, before the fourth day will see the riders leave Acqui Terme and venture south from Piemonte.

It is stage 2, however, that will capture most of the initial attention, presenting the Giro's earliest summit finish since Mount Etna appeared on stage 2 of the 1989 edition. 35 years on, the peloton will tackle the Oropa climb, upon which Tom Dumoulin staked his claim to the title in 2017 and Marco Pantani rode to a famous win 24 years ago.

The route for the 2024 Giro d'Italia Donne will also be confirmed on Friday, which will be the first edition organised by the RCS. As of yet, no substantive rumours have leaked surrounding its route design.

Chris Froome crashes at the Tour of Hainan but pledges to race in 2024

Despite racing only 37 days in 2023, Israel-Premier Tech's Chris Froome has confirmed to Flo Bikes that he aims to continue racing with the ProTeam next season. The four-time Tour de France winner spoke to the American outlet ahead of the Tour du Hainan, which served as his first race since July, and the first with his 'new bike position'

“I made a few changes to my bike position," Froome revealed. "I found that I was quite far off from my previous position in the Sky/Ineos days, and I am feeling much better on the bike,"

“The biggest thing was I was struggling with my lower back before the Tour [de France]. I had a lot of lower back pain... I am finally sitting back in my old position again.”

Sadly for the veteran, he did not have the opportunity to mount a good performance in China, having crashed on the final day and finished a lowly 63rd overall, 34 minutes down on the 47-year-old race winner, Óscar Sevilla.

After missing out on the team's Tour de France selection this summer, Froome has kept a low profile as his participation has been announced for the Singapore Criterium and the upcoming Japan Cup. The disappointing season has not dissuaded the 38-year-old Brit from continuing racing, though.

“I am going to make [the Tour de France] my focus for next year. I hope to have a proper buildup in the first part of the season going toward the Tour, and make that my big objective,” he was adamant.

However, he will have to make the team's selection first, which won't be an easy task. Israel-Premier Tech flourished in the year's first two Grand Tours through the performances of Derek Gee, Mike Woods and Krists Neilands, and next year will welcome the likes of Pascal Ackermann (UAE Team Emirates) and Ethan Vernon (Soudal Quick-Step), as they develop their sprinting pedigree.

To try and make the Tour selection this year, Froome only rode two one-day races and La Route d'Occitanie, where apparent mechanical issues dented his ambitions. The former phenom has since admitted to making mistakes in his preparation and will now reshape his racing calendar for 2024.

Read more: Chris Froome: I’ll return to the Tour de France in 2024

“I am going to target a lot more of the week-long stage races," he detailed on Friday. "Maybe stay away from some of the one-day races. Some stage races with back-to-back mountain stages would be a good test for me and see where I am for the Tour.”

Imanol Erviti announces surprise retirement following Il Lombardia, bringing 19-year career to a close

On Monday morning, Movistar veteran Imanol Erviti announced his immediate retirement from professional cycling, pulling the curtain down on a 19-year professional career that has seen the Spaniard become one of the peloton's most highly respected domestiques.

Taking to social media to announce the news, Erviti wanted first and foremost to pay tribute to those who had ridden for and with.

"After 19 years of unforgettable professional and personal experiences in the Movistar Team, the time has come to say goodbye," Erviti wrote. "I want to thank all the members of the team, from the first ones who noticed me when I was a young rider, to the last ones I'm with."

Erviti's entire career was, of course, spent with the Movistar outfit, an almost unprecedented tenure in the modern age of cycling. Erviti was one of the old guard, having signed for Movistar in 2005 alongside Alejandro Valverde, when they were known as Illes Balears - Caisse d'Epargne.

Read more: 26,000km in the bank in 2023 but Alejandro Valverde laughs off comeback suggestion

Since then, not only did Erviti mark his card as an invaluable member of both Movistar's Grand Tour and Classics squads, but the Spaniard also won two stages of the Vuelta a España along the way.

Alongside Juan Antonio Flecha, Erviti is perhaps Spain's finest cobbled Classics rider of the last 20 years, having ridden Paris-Roubaix on 18 occasions throughout his career. His best result came in 2016 with a ninth-placed finish.

His retirement comes just two days after what turned out to be his last race in Movistar colours, at Il Lombardia. The year's fifth and final Monument had been targetted by Erviti's teammate, Enric Mas, but their ambitions were derailed when Mas crashed out of the race. Nonetheless, Erviti came home in 96th to bid adieu to the sport he has given so much.

Jasper Philipsen doubles up on stage 2 of the Tour of Türkiye

For the second day in succession, Alpecin-Deceuninck's sprinter supremo Jasper Philipsen won at the Tour of Türkiye ahead of an Astana Qazaqstan fast man. On the opening day, Gleb Syritsa was the unfortunate victim, whilst on Monday it was Cees Bol's turn to come up just short against the Belgian.

The Tour of Türkiye began with a lot of excitement at the prospect of seeing Philipsen come up against the returning Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan), who is riding for the first time since his Tour de France crash and subsequent retirement postponement.

Read more:

However, it became clear on stage 1 that the Brit is here to help his teammates, and Astana Qazaqstan can subsequently be pleasantly surprised with two runner-up spots in as many days.

Ahead of Monday's sprint, however, both themselves and Alpecin-Deceuninck had to work together on the front of the peloton to reel in the three-man breakaway of Artur Sowinski (Voster-ATS), Lennert Teugels (Bingoal WB) and Matteo Amella (Corratec-Selle Italia). This task was successful some 13km shy of the finish line, before which the road ramped up to a trying gradient within the final kilometre.

On this tough finale, it briefly looked as though Bol may have the upper hand on Philipsen, leading the race leader right up until the final 40m. It was at this point, though, that the 25-year-old showed his class and burst ahead of the Dutchman to secure his 40th professional victory.

Behind the leading duo, Luca Colnaghi of Green Project-Bardiani CSF-Faizanè was a distant third, with Philipsen taking the race lead into a monstrous stage 3 that will certainly see him lose his advantage. The summit finish on Tuesday's stage is 18.5km long and averages an eye-watering 10.4%.

Today's big headlines

From an octopus’ garden in the shade, it is time to bid adieu. Until the next time.

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