20 totalling 1,150 kilometres, the Grand Finale in Rome
Five. Like the fingers on a hand, the senses of a human being and the Giri d’Italia won by Binda, Coppi and Merckx. The Giro-E, born in 2019, also crosses this milestone: the 2023 edition will be the fifth. It will start from Fossacesia (Chieti) on 6 May, organised by RCS Sport & Events.
The route was unveiled today in Milan, in the multimedia rooms at RCS Academy, and it could be one of the most exciting edition ever. The 1,150 kilometres in total are divided into 20 stages. From Abruzzo to the Dolomites, from the sea to the peaks, the event will showcase, Italy at its most authentic Italy, off the major and busiest tourist routes, as usual, and will eventually close in the capital, on 28 May, with bikes and fans flooding into Rome. For the fifth time – what a coincidence! – the Eternal City will take the Giro d’Italia to the final finish line: the first was in 1911, on the fiftieth anniversary of the Kingdom, the last in 2018, with Froome splendidly crossing the finish in the Maglia Rosa, with the Colosseum and the Imperial Forums on the background. Another postcard image will be that of the start of the Roman stage of the Giro-E, which will take place in Via della Conciliazione, with St Peter’s Basilica in the background. 17 permanent teams and 10 Special teams, that will only start on certain stages, have registered: this is a record number.
The Giro-E has a green soul and, with its pedal-assisted racing bikes with an electric
heart, it is an ambassador for sustainable mobility and a conscious lifestyle. With this in mind, the starting village becomes a small mobility and sustainability fair every morning. As a novelty this year, entertainment and content will be included in the Green Village to engage the public even more, thus creating a Green Fun Village. Exhibitors include Enel X Way, Continental, Trenitalia, Toyota, Lombardo Bikes,Parkpre and MOST. BiciScuola, the Giro d’Italia project to bring children closer to the values of sport and cycling, will also be present at the Green Fun Village.
BiciScuola is part of RideGreen, a project created in 2016 to reduce the effects of the passage of the Corsa Rosa on the territory, through the proper management of the waste streams generated and by using a traceability system. With the help of more than 200 volunteers and numerous local companies, also coordinated by the E.R.I.C.A. cooperative, the waste produced in the various locations along the route of the Giro d’Italia is collected in dedicated recycling depots situated at strategic points of each stage, and then sent for recycling to be transformed into secondary raw material and put back into the production cycle. But over the years RideGreen has become much more than recycling, to the point of involving education with BiciScuola and sustainable mobility with Giro-E.
RCS Sport has been committed to sustainability issues for years, and one of the novelties this year is the involvement of an important partner, NATIVA, an Italian Regenerative Design Company that supports hundreds of companies in evolving towards regenerative economic models. The company is conducting an analysis that will assess the environmental and social impact of RCS Sport and two of its events: Milano Marathon and Giro d’Italia/Giro-E. This will highlight both RCS Sport’s virtuous practices and areas for possible improvement, in order to guide future choices. The project, which will be described in a dedicated Report, involves the entire ecosystem through a quantitative and qualitative analysis.
Moreover, Treedom will be included as a partner supporting the Giro-E in its sustainable development activities. Treedom’s project started in 2021 with the cycling classics and it will be continued by adding 200 trees planted by the Giro-E to RCS Sport’s forest. This initiative will be combined with a challenge through the Wecity app, which monitors and rewards sustainable mobility, among the communities of the 20 starting cities of the Giro-E. Wecity is a non-profit company that aims at generating behavioural change in companies, public administrations and citizens by encouraging sustainable travel and certifying the CO2 saved. Through the app, citizens’ ‘sustainable’ travel will be monitored and a ranking will be generated. The most virtuous cities and citizens will be “awarded” more trees within the Treedom forest of the Giro-E.
Paolo Bellino, Managing Director and General Manager at RCS Sport: “It will be a highly spectacular edition. For the first time a stage of the Giro-E will be held entirely on foreign soil, and I am sure that the conclusion in Rome will remain in the hearts of all participants. But it will also be the greenest edition ever, because there are so many sustainability initiatives in the 2023 Enel X Way Giro-E. Today we must have a different approach to organising events, and this is what we have been working on for some time. Thanks to the collaboration with Nativa, we have added a further piece to our path towards total sustainability”.
Federico Caleno, Head of Italy at Enel X Way, Giro-E 2023 title sponsor: “We are thrilled to be a partner of the Giro-E, because it is a competition that gives athletes a unique experience. A moment of sport that perfectly integrates innovation, care for the environment and a strong presence on the territory. A philosophy that we fully share and that we want to strengthen again this year as the main player of recharging infrastructures in Italy with a network of points that has reached 18,000 and a continuous development of technology that is leading to the installation of superchargers, very high power chargers, to fill up with energy very quickly for an even more comfortable travel experience”.
Giorgio Cattaneo, PR & Communication manager at Continental Italia: “Continental is increasingly looking to the world of cycling. The bicycle, especially if pedal-assisted, manages to combine technology and sustainability to perfection and represents one of the increasingly competitive alternatives to the need to get around and the desire for closeness and contact with nature and the wonder of our territory in as healthy an environment as possible, which more and more people are expressing. Supporting the Giro-E is also an important opportunity for us to raise awareness of the issue of safety on the roads and the coexistence of different types of vehicles that characterises the mobility landscape and requires a great deal of sensitivity on everyone’s part. In addition to all this, the Giro E is a perfect mix of engaging experience and passion that we want to be part of, and an effective communication platform to give visibility to our values and our vision of the future”.
Roberto Salvador, Giro-E director: “The Giro-E is becoming increasingly green and is confirmed as being a place for experimentation, not only with bikes. For example, this year the organisation will use five all electric Toyota cars along the entire route. A new fabric that absorbs CO2 and other polluting components will be used as a ceiling in the hospitality facilities: it will allow us to offset the CO2 produced by the organisation. At the end of the event we will test the materials and certify how many pollutants they have absorbed. The same material will be used for the numbers of the captains’ bikes, so we will be able to measure how many pollutants we will have encountered along the way. The Green Fun Village, the sustainability village that will offer many activities to the public in all starting cities, will be also very important, offering: games, challenges, entertainment, a tasting area where you can discover local dishes, and of course the stands of our sustainability-themed partners. This year we have also launched a partnership with the National Centre for Sustainable Mobility, a start-up of the Ministry of Transport by which to study and experiment with new mobility solutions”.
Damiano Cunego, Giro d’Italia 2004 and Il Lombardia 2004, 2007 and 2008 winner: “This will be my second Giro-E. Last year, as captain of the RCS Sport team, it was a great experience. It was my first time on a pedal-assisted bike. I also understood the importance of the message: the promotion of a more sustainable lifestyle, also through the use of this type of bike for everyday use. I live in the city of Verona, and this message has got through: every day I see city bikes, gravel bikes. And then there’s the more cyclist talk: being able to tackle stages of the Giro d’Italia that are not for everyone. Many people have come to ride with us, even those with no previous experience, who without a motor bike would not have been able to tackle these difficult routes. But even if you have a motor, you have to earn the climb, you have to pedal and you still struggle, because the bike is not a motorbike. But that’s the beauty of it, what makes the participants go home happy and satisfied”.