Riders Names painted on the road by their fans is a common sight.
But it all started in the 1936 Giro d’Italia when the fans of DI PACO thought up the idea to inspire their hero, an idea that has been copied ever since.
Incidentally, although the name Di Paco would be unlikely to be seen, the large W above his name is still seen above many other riders names. It stands for Eviva: LIVE.
Rafaële Di Paco certainly had a great career - which ran from 1927 (team time trial champion of Italy ) until 1944, winner of the 6 days of Buenos-Aires (with Slaats). In 1936 he finished 41st in the Giro, but won five stages and was second in 5, and finished third in another.
For more great Giro facts click here.
Please visit this great site click here.
“La Maglia Rosa” The pink jersey ("Maglia rosa"), whose color was chosen for being the same as the colour as the "Gazzetta dello Sport" pages, was introduced in the 19th Giro d'Italia (1931), as a symbol of overall leadership in the race. The first wearer was Learco Guerra, winner of the opening stage from Milan to Mantua.
Belgian riders have won the race 7 times including 5 wins by Eddy Merckx. The other two winners were Michel Pollentier (1977) and Johan De Muynck (1978).
Original by Claude Le Boul – conception et réalisation Paul Ide.
The Giro d’Italia was launched at the Bologna bike show in 1908. The newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport had learned that its rival, La Corriere della Sera, was planning a Tour de France type race, and hastily drew up plans for its own.
The first race started at 2.53 p.m. on 13th May 1909 from Paiazza Loreto in Milan, with Luigi Ganna winning over a distance of 2448.2km. Just 49 of the 127 starters finished the race.
Although Luigi Ganna died in 1957 his name lives on with Ganna bicycles - from the company website-
Ganna: Since 1912, the success of product and a Trade Name
Once upon a time there was a man called Luigi Ganna, a famous cyclist of the early 1900s who, for a whole decade, in the saddle of the heaviest of equipment which at the time was optimistically called the bicycle, collected the incredibile sum of thirty victories.
Ganna was one of the most authentic dominators of the road of his time, together with names like Galetti, Gerbi and Cuniolo. In 1909, the year in which his career reached a climax, he was the first Italian to win the Milan-Sanremo race, the most prestigious national race of the time, covering the 290 kilometres of the route in 9 hours, 32 minutes. The same year he was the first Italian to win the The same year he was the first Italian to win the "Giro d'Italia" on roads which were in a terrible condition. In 1912, after giving up racing, he began to produce bicycles in Varese, his home town, adopting as Trade Name his own famous name and reaching immediate and enormously flattering success: it is not to be forgotten, in fact, that Luigi Ganna, before coming a producer, was a faithful friend of the bicycle, to which he owed his reputation.
In 1912, the "Giro di Lombardia" was won by Carlo Oriani riding a Ganna bicycle, the first victory of a winning make, then as it is today. In 1985 Giubilato Cicli s.r.l. took over this historic company name, but remained faithful to the traditions of quality and reliability for which it was well known from its earliest days earliest days in 1912.
mmmm nice bike!
to visit the company site (in English) click here.
Only four riders have worn the pink jersey from start to finish -
Costante Girardengo (1919), Alfredo Binda (1927) Eddy Merckx (1973) and Gianni Bugno (1990).
Costante Girardengo was the first rider to be nicknamed «campionissimo», born in Novi Ligure, Alexandria, Italy on 18 March 1893. He won the Milan-San Remo 6 times. A record only bettered by Eddy Merckx. Girardengo holds the record for most wins in the Milan-Turin with 5 victories and was Italian professional champion for 9 years running between 1913 and 1925 (with a break due to World War One). He was ranked number one in the world in 1919,22-23,25-26. He won the Giro twice - 1919 and 1923. Costante Girardengo died in 1978.
Felice Gimondi holds the record for top three Giro placings. He won overall in 1967, 1969, and 1976. was second in 1970 and 1973; and was third in 1965, 1968, 1974 and 1975.
Current leader of the “Maglia Ciclamino” competition Alessandro Petacchi has inspired many with his tremendous ride on stage 16 Daily Peloton reader “Lord Carruthers of Arusha” (DSO, OBM. etc - retired), sent in his effort -
Ode to Petacchi
From the frozen wastes of Canada.
to the stifling heat of Karachi.
All the empires cycling sons
talk of brave Petacchi.
He set off bandaged from Arco.
Maglia Ciclamino clean and starchy,
no one knows the pain he felt,
good ol’brave Petacchi.
No prophet could have seen such things,
nostradamus or Malachi;
La Spezia must breed special men.
iron men like brave Petacchi.
the sprinters fought along Lungo Ticino.
with elbows and all that malarkey,
One man was too bold for that
good ol’brave Petacchi
as the sped towards the finish line,
one man moved from the fiaschi,
with bandaged legs and purple shirt,
we knew it was Petacchi.
in future years as olden men
will have forgotten liberace,
but all who stood in Pavia town
will remember brave Petacchi