At the start, when it started to rain in Biella, at the foot of the climb pantanian At the Oropa sanctuary, some Colombians in Italy, mother and daughter, stand before the UAE bus, the Molano and Gaviria team, and show their tricolor flag, with a double yellow stripe, as Goethe liked, and a poster in brown paper with a clear message in large capital letters written with colored markers: “SOS Colombia. No to the repression of the paramilitary government. Protesting is a right. Endurance”.
The Giro approaches the first mountains – on Tuesday, Sestola, where Alberto Tomba learned to ski, like all Bolognese – but beforehand it passes through Alba and the uberrimus hills of the Langhe and Roero, territory of Beppe Fenoglio and the Resistencia, from partisans, guerrillas and ambushes, of blood and struggle, where it does not rain. One could rewrite Marx and specify that history does not repeat itself as a farce, as he postulated, but as a cycling race, and the agony of a hunted runner, a Dutchman on the run, Taco van der Hoorn, which excites and makes people happy. to those who always believe that true beauty, so fleeting and strange, stops for the victory of the improbable, because Van der Hoorn fights, grits his teeth and defeats the science of the platoon unleashed on the hunt. Colombian women may not know it, but, sure, they intuit it, and they remind their cyclists, the world.
The platoon loses its pride and, like the great armies, the need to regroup and wait for the stragglers who could not keep up in the successive third and fourth climbs to the hills with so many vineyards. Not even the most anticipated stars decide to undertake a blazing coup that the fans want on the climb to Guarene, a wall at the exit of Alba with a final couple of hectometres at 15%.
No Sagan, the most favorite for the type of terrain, who hides behind his team, at Bora rhythm; Neither are long-winded climbers, who are from long mountains, nor Almeida, the early Portuguese 2020. Not the most desired, Remco, so young that for him Alba, the city of white truffles too, does not sound like an emblem at all of the Resistance against the Nazi invaders but, in any case, as the place where the Ferrero chocolatiers invented the Kinder egg that made his childhood so happy although not as much as that of Andréi Ponomar, a Ukrainian with cheeks and a child’s face very appropriate for his 18 years – the youngest of the Giro in the last 75 years, at least – who sneaks into Van der Hoorn’s escape at kilometer zero and is left pale and unwilling to continue playing when in a descent is one centimeter away from colliding with a motorcycle that crosses you in a curve.
After the stage, Filippo Ganna, so loved by all, announces that Sestola will mean the end of his pink fable of 2021 (three days, one more than in 2020), and that instead he will wear the worker’s overalls for his beloved leader Egan Bernal, in whom he believes so much and from whom he hopes so much. And he also says that the fact that Remco has not moved does not mean that he is not well, on the contrary, the 21-year-old Belgian who returns to cycling nine months after breaking his hip is, for Ganna, the strongest of the Giro. “How young people come, what audacity,” says the Italian giant who has not yet turned 25 and already feels old. “I was already a bit soggy on the last climb, but I’ve seen him go up like lightning moving the big plate in the hardest part. Jopé ”.