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The countdown to the start of the 2023 Giro d’Italia included the official team presentation on Thursday night, with the 22 teams showing off their final rosters and some new colours for the first Grand Tour of the season.
Most of the 176 riders that make up the 2023 Giro d’Italia peloton arrived in Abruzzo on the central Adriatic coast on Wednesday and went for their first training riders on Thursday morning to shake down their new bikes and have a first look at Saturday’s opening time trial along the coast.
World champion Remco Evenpoel, three-time stage winner Primož Roglič, Geraint Thomas and 2020 champion Tao Geoghegan Hart all faced the media in a series of scheduled video press conferences, revealing their hopes and ambitions for the Corsa Rosa, with Alasdair Fotheringham and Barry Ryan attending for Cyclingnews.
The teams underwent some pre-race photography and video shoots for television and then rode on stage between 8:30 and 10:00 pm local time in Pescara, waving to the crowd when they perhaps preferred to be enjoying a plate of pasta.
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EF Education-EasyPost showed off their new patchwork colours which replace their usual pink kit to avoid a clash with the leader’s magia rosa. Intermarché-Circus-Wanty also showed their new kit for the Giro, with the sky blue and fluorescent colours created by the shape of wine stains to thank sponsor Vini Zabù.
Israel-Premier Tech also has a new red and blue jersey to honour their sponsor Vini Fantini, which is based in Abruzzo.
Most riders appeared lean, clean shaven and ready to race, with Mark Cavendish trying his hardest to speak in Italian, João Almeida showing off a new moustache and Roglič appearing happy and relaxed. Evenepoel was a little more serious but seemed to enjoy the cheers from the tifosi.
He and his Soudal-QuickStep wore face masks before riding on stage to avoid any risk of catching COVID-19 from other riders or race staff. The recent cases at Jumbo-Visma have concerned some teams and the Dutch squad line-up on stage with just seven riders as Sam Oomen was still travelling to Italy.
The riders head out for final training rides on Friday, most on their time trial bikes, for a look at the 19.6km time trial course from Fossacesia Marina to Ortona along the stunning Ciclovia bike path.
Click or swipe through our photo gallery to get a real feel of what happened at the team presentation.
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